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The wonder technique

Abiya Bibi is an SHG member of Bandhan SHG and lives in Dhaknabari village of South Boitamari Gaon Panchayat, Biotamari Block, Bongaigaon district, Assam. Her family comprises of 5 members, her husband Fazar Ali, Son Amir Husain and daughter in law Minara Haq and a grandson. She joined the SHG in January 2016. She is a marginal farmer and owns half Bigha of homestead land. She and her husband and their son and depend mostly on wage work and agriculture-related work to earn their livelihood. The son is a mason and does construction related works at their locality. With the money they earn, hardly could meet their round the year food sufficiency. 15kgs of rice which they used to get from PDS was not enough to fill the gap. This year she decided to take 2 bighas of land on lease to do sharecropping (called Sukani in local dialect). She decided to do summer paddy, eri dhaan.

She got to know about the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) in a training conducted in their village by SeSTA’s professional and Community resource person of their Village organization. Initially, she was apprehensive to adopt the SRI practice but later after getting exposures on SRI, she got excited to do SRI in no time. Therefore, for the first time, she did SRI Summer paddy in 2016 and got around 20 mon per bigha. The earlier yield was only 8-9 mons. This increase in production has motivated her to adopt SRI technique again next year. Moreover, she also understands the input cost differences between the traditional and SRI method. In the former method, she invested more than 9000 rupees in two bigha of land, whereas, in the latter method, she had invested only 4000 rupees including irrigation fees and tractor fares but sharply cuts on chemical fertilizers cost as she has learned and made organic fertilizers such as Jivamrit and Ghana jivamrit on her own. So now having applied SRI method in her agriculture practices not only improved her family’s food security but also won the trust of the landowner who is now ready to give her land even for the Kharif paddy season. It has improved her social stature also as many other families have got inspired by her success and adopted the technique.