Bhubaneswar, November 13 (LocalWire): Committed to support the central government’s initiative to double the income of farmers, the Utkal Alumina International has completed transplantation for 369 acres in 16 villages under its Wadi project.
Doraguda-based Utkal, a unit of the Aditya Birla Group, had initiated project Wadi in 2018 as part of it’s CSR activity aimed at helping the farmers increase their income level.
The project entails a range of activities that are geared towards sustainable livelihood and help make a difference to the local populace.
The project aims to cover 424 acres and cover 76 landless families who would get to develop a mixed fruit orchard of mango and cashew in one acre—54 cashew and 18 mango grafts—with support of income generation from goat rearing.
The six-year project is being implemented by Utkal Alumina Jana Seva Trust in partnership with the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD).
“The project started in 2018-19 with an aim to double the income level of beneficiaries at the end of the project period.
We are quite optimistic that the project will bring about a phenomenal change in the income of farmers in the coming days,” Utkal Alumina unit head and president N Nagesh said, adding that he is aware of the challenges ahead but is confident of meeting the goals.
According to the company, the progress so far has been encouraging. “So far, transplantation is done for 369 acres in 16 villages, with 118 acres in 2018-19 and 251 acres in 2019-20. The rest will be covered in the coming year,” a company release stated.
Under the project, each beneficiary is trained to take care of the survival and desired growth of grafts.
This is done through border fencing, tree guard and making basin, intercultural activity, disease and pest control, plantation of border forest species, intercrop and the like. What holds the key here is regular and constant monitoring.
Furthermore, modern scientific goat rearing is also adopted to generate income for landless families. The project also includes strengthening of existing women’s group and health awareness modules.
The project includes creating a sustainable irrigation system using solar-powered water resource development, and the beneficiaries are encouraged to take up different vegetables as intercrop in the Wadi plots. This adds to their income before reaping dividends from fruit plants after four years of the plantation.