Daasi, a woman from a forest community in Nagarahole National Park voluntarily relocated to the Sollepura resettlement center in HD Kote taluk in 2007, and has been independently farming ever since. Belonging to the Jenukuruba tribe, she is a mother of ten, and after her husband’s passing, had been eking a living by selling minor forests produce. Post voluntary relocation, she has been able to take up agricultural activities and has been harvesting a diverse range of crops – from maize to beans, tomato and chilli.
Our field staff has helped in providing Daasi with seeds as well as access to attend various training programmes in Mysuru and Bengaluru. Daasi acknowledges this support, and has deservedly gone on to win several awards and accolades. In 2018, she was honoured by the leading Kannada daily, Vijaya Karnataka, with the ‘VK Superstar Farmer’ award for her achievements.
Recently, Daasi was also the recipient of the ‘Phalashreshtha Award’ from the University of Horticultural Sciences, Bagalkot. She has been an exponent of various sustainable agricultural practices, including sprinkler irrigation and rainwater harvesting. “It is not very important how much land you own. What is more important is how you make the best use of what you have without your agricultural practises adversely affecting the land,” says an experienced and wise Daasi who never got a formal education. She now grows ragi, chia, corn, areca, coconut, pepper, banana, ginger, mushrooms among other crops with the generous backing of Larsen & Toubro Infotech Limited and NatWest India Foundation who have been supporting our livelihood initiatives to beneficiaries of the government sponsored voluntary relocation programme.