This Onam, women bring barren land to life
Pothencode: A women's collective is preparing to celebrate Onam in its true soul and spirit, bringing back a small piece of barren land to life, cultivating their own paddy on it. The initiative taken by nine women on the 24 cents of land at Puliykachira village turned a success with a golden harvest.
The land belongs to Vavarambalam Puliykkachira Sureshkumar of Shivashreyas House. The land has been lying barren for the last four years after his last round of paddy ran into major losses. The women had approached Suresh seeking permission to clear the land under the Rural Employee Guarantee Scheme. Suresh agreed on the condition that the women should not just stop at clearing the field but also cultivate the land.
With three in their group above the age of 70 being experienced in paddy cultivation, the women took up the challenge. Suresh himself procured rice seeds of 'Jyothy' variety for cultivation from Jaleel, a farmer at Kalloor. He also made arrangements to apply pesticides.
The grass was cut and covered in lime preparing the field for production. The nine women together prepared the land for paddy and sowed the paddy seeds soaked and germinated in a mud pot after being covered with hay for three days.
Another major source of help in the endeavor was Netajipuram Ajith, a panchayat member at Netajipuram. Ajith along with Block Panchayat member Vinitha Vijayan inaugurated the harvest in the presence of Pothencode Agriculture Officer Salahuddin. The harvested paddy will be boiled to make it into rice and the same will be used for preparing the feast during Onam (sadya).