Sprinklers For Nalanda Farmers Ushers Improved Yields

Sprinklers For Nalanda Farmers Ushers Improved Yields

सब खूबी में सबसे बड़का खूबी है कि इससे मेहनत कम पड़ता हैदवाई, खाद, पानी सब मशीन से पट जाता है |”(The best thing about this system is that it reduces our effort in applying medicines, fertilisers, and water. The machine does everything)— says Sujanti Devi, the proud owner of the sprinkler irrigation unit set up in her field.

Sujanti and Vinod Kumar are farmers from Amar village in Harnaut Block in Bihar’s Nalanda District. They, like many other farmers, faced challenges in irrigating their crops using the flood irrigation method. It eventually led to ruining crops due to uneven distribution of water. The sprinkler irrigation system has significantly improved their crop yield and let to an improvement in their livelihood.

They along with their three sons are engaged in agriculture. And in order to make ends meet, they farm through the year and grow a variety of crops such as lentils, vegetables, mustard, paddy, and wheat. But reliance on the flood irrigation method meant there was never enough water to produce crops.

Through Project Utthan—an Oxfam India-HDFC Bank CSR project—a sprinkler irrigation system was installed in Sujanti's field with support from the government's irrigation subsidy scheme. The sprinkler system is an advanced, sustainable means of irrigation that sprinkles water from the top, evenly distributing it so that each plant/sapling can get an equal amount of water. This saves water and reduces the farmers' costs on electricity. Since the system also does ‘fertigation’—which is the application of fertiliser through the irrigation source— it saves the farmers’ time and effort.

With the new sprinkler system, Sujanti and Vinod noticed a significant improvement in their crop yield. The system’s equal distribution of water is particularly beneficial for crops like lentils, which require less water.

Oxfam India has installed sprinkler irrigation systems in the fields of 45 farmers in 15 villages across three blocks in Nalanda District under Project Utthan. These systems were funded partly through the Pradhan Mantri Sinchai Vikas Yojana and partly through Project Utthan. HRDP project managed to leverage Rs 24.51 lakh from the government irrigation subsidy programme.The project aims to support small-scale farmers in the area to adopt sustainable irrigation systems and increase their crop yields, thereby supporting their livelihoods and contributing to food security in the region.

Project Utthan—an Oxfam India and HDFC Bank initiative—in Nalanda promotes and supports sustainable livelihood opportunities and improves access to essential services (particularly for women) across 15 villages. The project works with the most marginalised communities.

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