Two pronged activities were planned at Kukru:
A) Income Generation initiatives
---a) Animal Husbandry – Gotary
B) Creation of Water resource
A –a) Goatary:
Since the villagers have substantial cattle population – it was considered beneficial to them to rear goats which are highly reproductive and can be sold in local market – after 2/3 years.
A cooperative was formed for the beneficiary villagers under the name of Adivasi Bahu-Uddeshya Shakhakari Samiti Maryadit (ABSSM).
Out of the Donations received under section 35 A/c –169 Nos. female goats were given to 33 families @ 5 goats per family and 4 female goat was provided to one family. 9 male goats were given to 9 families.
Immediately on arrival of Monsoon huge number of goats died due to severe cold and skin disease.
After monsoon fresh 90 goats were purchased and replaced.
Further, our Technical Assistant was sent to a Goatary Farm near Nagpur to get first hand knowledge on vaccination and treatment of usual diseases.
The total cost incurred in the Project was Rs. 3.21 Lakhs.
Very unfortunately the scheme did not succeed since:
1) Villagers did not take proper care of Goats 2) Quite a few butchered and ate meat during marriages 3) A large number died due to infection. 4) A good number were taken out by Leopards from nearby forest – who
became frequent visitors to attack un-protected goats.
We consider the main reason to be our failure to convince the villagers about their ownership right and long-term benefit.
A –b) Plantation:
At the very initial stage we experimented with several trees:
Eucalyptus : 5% success Su Babul : 5% success Bamboo : 10% success Mango : The tree survived but there was no fruit Guava : The tree survived but there was no fruit Lemon : There was bumper corp in the second year but the plant died on 3rd year.
We strongly felt that plantation of Medicinal Plants would ensure benefit in short term and villagers shall be able to handle such activities – once we train them on plantation and after care after our demonstrative farming in 5 Acre land belonging to Shri. Deb.
None of the Society Members really had any on-hand experience on plantation/Farming and we decided to avail services of expert Agencies/Institution.
Experts from following Agencies/Institutions were invited to suggest and guide us on cultivation of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants and also Folder:
i) Regional Research Laboratory (RRL), Aromatic & Medicinal Plant
Bhuvaneshwar ii) C-MAP, Lucknow -do- iii) Narmada Valley Research Centre, Locally available Medicinal
Hoshangabad Plant. iv) Indian Grassland and Forage
Research Institute, Jhansi Fodder Cultivation v) Agriculture College, Sehore -do- vi) Bhavnagar Fuel wood vii) CAZRI, Jodhpur Seena Seed Plantation
viii) School of Life Science- Jawaharlal For Tissue-cultured sturdy Nehru University, New Delhi and fast growth plantation ix) Regional Research Laboratory (RRL),
Of C.S.I.R., Jammu Citronela Plantation x) Dabur Foundation Aola Plantation xi) Sabuj Biplab Bolangir, Orissa Six different Medicinal plants
None-except one – succeeded due to either:
: Termite infection : Fungus development due to low cloud over : Absence of bare minimum irrigation : Absence of Soil Nutrition
The only plant that survived was the Citronela grass supplied by RRL, Jammu. In the first year after plantation, nothing grew but surprisingly on the second year the entire plantation grew up.
When the Citronela Grass was considered –it was in high demand both in India and International Market. But looking at the vast demand, China took up plantation in Millions of Hectares and due to bumper crop, the price in the International Market came down by 90% and we had to abandon future plan.
ACTIVITY – B: WATER RESOURCE:
Right at the initial stage- The ground water survey was conducted through Hydrology Deptt. of Govt. of Madhya Pradesh and it indicated that no ground water source is available in the area.
Attempt was made through several Water-Diviners and at one location – Bore well was attempted but even after 200 ft. boring no water was available.
Mr. Deb got a 20 ft. deep Dug well constructed and it was full to the brim after the monsoon. In the next year it was attempted to deepen the well by another 10 ft. Very unfortunately in the process of blasting – the side walls developed cracks and
now the well gets emptied within few days after monsoon even after trying out cement plastering and water proof painting to stop the leakage.
SANTULAN society got Five dug-wells and a storage tank constructed was built for the natural spring near the village. Out of 5 Dug wells 3 Nos. Dug on storm/monsoon water stream succeeded.
One particular Dug well constructed on a Nallah – on South Western side of project area was provided with an Earthen Dam and this now provides water through out the year. Villagers on their own have constructed two more Dug wells on this Nallah.
Besides the attempts for Goatary, Plantations and Water Resource, following other miscellaneous activities were carried out:
(i) Community Centre Building was constructed to facilitate storage, sitting accommodation for a likely visiting Doctor and or a counter for Bank. Unfortunately nothing did materialize due to various constraints. The total cost was Rs. 2.04 Lakhs.
(ii) A Hybrid Wind-Solar System was installed for Battery Charging and 10 Nos. of Solar Lanters were provided to the villagers – with rechargeable facility. The system worked for a year or so but had to be abandoned due to regular maintenance problem and theft of Solar Panel from roof of cottage. Cost incurred Rs. 1.17 Lakhs.
(iii) As initiated by Govt. of India under Swacch Bharat Mission – one typical Toilet was constructed by Santulan at a cost of Rs. 20,000/- as against the Government estimation of Rs. 12000/- .
RECENT INITIATIVES :
As we are convinced that plantation is the ideal option for Income generation in Kukru- area in view of local population being experienced in cultivation and are having barren land, we decided to explore various options for plantation.
We studied and analyzed several options on consideration of their suitability under prevailing conditions and also the marketing and profitability aspects.
The Secretary visited Lac Research Institute of ICAR at Ranchi and also Semialata Plantation (on which Lac is cultivated) near Raipur, Chattisgarh.
The Secretary also visited CIMAP of ICAR and a Private Planter at Lucknow U.P. to explore cultivation of Khas (Vetiver).
Kukru – as such has severe water problems and putting water in the toilet is a luxury – except during monsoon months.
Subsequently few villagers have constructed Toilets under Govt. grants which are of very poor in quality and are collapsing within a year.
(iv) In association with Bharat Sevasram Sangha, Bhopal, 100 LED Torches were
distributed among the villagers.
But ultimately we found none to be suitable for our area considerating the land quality, irrigation facility and expert manpower availability.
Finally we decided to go for Horticulture and initiated – two activities-
a) Creation of water source for bare minimum watering of plants during summer
b) Plantation of various types of fruit trees which appeared to be suitable.
a) Water Source:
In view of high rainfall in the area, we constructed a storage tank of dimension 12mx10mx3m depth by using excavator.
To avoid seepage – we have laid 500 Micron HDPE sheet procured from Tarpaulin India.
Further, to minimize evaporation we have provided a 90% shade Black-Net cover on the tank.
The total cost incurred is Rs. 93,000/-
Mr. Deb has recently availed Electric Connection and we shall be able to run a small pump for watering of plants.
We are hopeful that during the current monsoon the pond will be filled up.
(b) After consideration of several options we have planted the following fruit bearing
Mango : 40 Nos. Jackfruit : 10 Nos. Berry : 5 Nos. Aola : 5 Nos. Guava : 10 Nos. Black Berry : 10 Nos. Drumstick : 10 Nos. Lemon : 5 Nos. Custard Apple : 5 Nos. Karonda : 5 Nos.
We got 1mx1mx1m pits excavated for plantation of above trees through excavator and have also provided a 2 ft. deep cattle protection trench all around the plot.
Pits have been treated for anti-termite, anti-fungus and single super Phosphate.
The total cost for the plantation has been Rs. 1,10,000/-