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Ponds help Odisha farmers get bumper crop

A group of farmers in Odisha have turned an arid drought-prone area into one of plenty. Not due to any steps taken by the government but thanks to a training program being conducted by an NGO, Manav Adhikar Seva Samiti, where farmers are taught to conserve water and minimise impact on groundwater by harvesting rainwater in small man-made ponds.

22 ponds have already been made by farmers and these have proved to be very cost-effective. Despite deficient and erratic rainfall, the results are encouraging.

Sitaram Majhi used to migrate to Hyderabad to work. Now he grows vegetables in his 8-acre farm. For Tulsi Amar, another migrant labourer, who has taken to organic farming because he could not afford fertilisers, the results have been dramatic. He grows 20 types of vegetables.

More such self-help efforts need to be encouraged.


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