Gram Bharti at Amrapur
Team Report - Day 1 - 2 (SRISTI Summer School) Topic: Crop Vandalism Team Members: Keyur Undaviya Faculty Coordinators: Suresh Patni, Kuldeep Khatri Field Visit- 1 (Gram Bharti at Amrapur near Gandhinagar) For our first field visit we decided to visit the farming village Amrapur located near Gandhinagar, 50 km from our place of stay. We left at 8 am in the morning and reached there at 9 am. Firstly there was a speech by Mr Anil Gupta on the completion of 26 years SRISTI and various talks by a group of farmers were delivered to us. Each of the farmer talked to us the problems faced by them. Discussion by farmers: Before approaching towards the solution, we heard a lot about attack style and the herd size of the Nilgai. There were many watch towers and farmers used to guard their respective field with their heavy torch light (with the help of this torch they were able to see up to quite large distance). Meanwhile we were talking about which kind of strategy would work against animals. Nilgai is very hyperactive and shy animal that’s why their domestication is not possible. We waited for Nilgai at night in the farm between 2 to 4 am but unluckily we weren’t able to spot them. But we understood their way of approaching towards the farms which was enough for us to move towards the solution. Problem statements: INTERVIEW 1 Name: Hasmukhbhai Patel Question: What crops do you grow in your land? Answer: In my distributed land - I grow wheat, jowar, bajra and kapas(cotton). Question: What do you think can increase the crop yield? Answer: The major loss to farmer here is due to the attack by wild animals in our farms. The loss is merely not due to eating, due to their movement through the field, most crop gets trampled. On average 30% of our production is lost due to animal activities. Therefore somehow getting rid if this Nilgai would result in increase in the crop yield. Question: Where do these animals come from? Answer: Nilgai animals stay in Kottar during the day and become active in the night. Kottar is the riverbed for river Sabarmati and during the winter season it does have water - the attack is lesser during those months. During summer the river is dry - they come out more often to seek food and water. Question: Can you give us some more information about Nilgai? Answer: They generally rest in the grassland during the day and around 8 in the evening they can be sighted in some of the farms. They come in herds of size upto 15 and both male and female are present. Question: Do they enter your fields from same point of location? (If they entered the field from the same location then the simple solution to this problem would be to just seal of their entry point) Answer: After eating in one field they move to the adjoining field and sometimes if they are chased away they run swiftly and destroy our crops in the process. They do not have a fixed entry point in the field. They can enter from any side thus surveillance is required on all directions. Apart from eating, due to their movement the plants which are in their primary stage gets effected. If their shoot is broken - it will not grow to its full height and hence the productivity is reduced. The returns are not proportional to our hard work. Question: Does government provide any compensation? Answer: Not at all. We had gone to the Gandhinagar Sachivalya to file a complaint. Despite submitting the images of the destroyed land we never got any response. Government officials do come to inquire about the amount of produce but not about the amount of destruction. Question: What do you think can act as an effective solution? Answer: Fencing of 6 feet height seems to the only possible method to prevent them from entering. But it very costly. Also building fences may effect on the crop yield. Summary: Hasmukhbhai informed us that he is not getting the desired rates for the crops grown to make a profit. He needs money during March end for sowing crops for the next financial year. Thus he takes loans and these loans keeps increasing over the year. If productivity of their fields is increased he can meet his financial demands. One way seems to be protection against attacks of wild animals which are responsible for 25% production loss. INTERVIEW 2 Name: Dr Pravinbhai Dabhi Question: Can you name the crops currently grown? Answer: Currently we grow jowar and cotton (kapaas). Question: Can you tell the extent of damage done to your farm? Answer: My farm is the nearest to the Kottar so maximum damage is done on my fields. It acts as the entry point for the wild animals. Thus I get 70 percent loss in the crop yield. I can survive only due the dairy that I have. Nilgai is a very big problem I am facing nowadays. Question: Does any other animal harm in any other way? Answer: Sometimes wild boar comes in the field and dugs the ground and destroys crop yield of pomegranate and lemons. Question: Does it harm to the humans? Answer: Sometimes if the person in alone then he is in danger by the attack of the Nilgai and also some people have died by Nilgai’s attacks in the neighbor fields. Question: So can we automate this process? Answer: The main problem of we farmers is we have to waste more time and energy behind this Nilgai every night. Also we have monetary issues. Technology can help us if we can do this by preventing Nilgai from home and thus we can concentrate on our crop yield. Summary: Pravinbhai informed us that the overall solution to the problem would be getting rid from the Nilgai in any possible ways. Nilgai are responsible for their major loss in basis of time, enery and production. Thus any possible action must be taken to get rid away from Nilgai. It would be okay if we need to automate this process. Thus this is the list problems discussed and faced by the farmers.