(from darkness to light)
‘Organic Farming for Farmers under Rainfed
conditions to Address Livelihood, Food
A PROJECT PROPOSAL for
Kollegal Taluk, Chamarajnagar District
SUSILA DHARMA INTERNATIONAL
2006 – 2008
No. 498, Erappa Lane,
N. R. Colony, Murugeshpalya,
Vimanapura Post, Bangalore – 560 017
Karnataka State, India
Kollegal, one of the taluk of Charamajnagar District is situated in South-East of
Karnataka State. The district is surrounded by Mysore District in the North-west,
Bangalore and Mandya in the North, Kerala State in the South-west and
Tamilnadu State in the South. Chamarajnagar has generally red sandy loomy
soil. This is suitable for growing wide range of plantation and horticulture crops.
The district enjoys salubrious climate temperature ranging from a minimum of 20
degrees Celsius t a maximum of 36 degree Celsius. Normal rainfall is around 750
mm. The rainy season is from May to October with maximum rainfall in the month
f May, September and October.
The land holding pattern in the district indicates that small and marginal farmers
account for 79 percent of the total land holding with 45 percent of the total land.
Semi and Medium farmers comprises around 15 per cent with 28 percent of the
land, while 6 percent of land holding above 4 hectares which accounts 26
percent of land.
Areas and size of holdings works out to 1.46 hectares as against the State
Average of 2.13 hectares.
Agricultural Pattern: Paddy, Jower, Ragi, maize, millets like Sajje, cereals, turs
like horsegram, green gram, redgram, oil crops like sunflower, kusube, til,
groundnut etc. and fibre crop Cotton are commonly cultivated here.
The introduction of Green Revolution technologies resulted in increased costs,
eroded wide range of genetics and traditional wisdoms, created pollutions and
instability in agricultural sector. The introduction of machineries has neglected
the agricultural labourers. It also benefited the small section of the society who
were well off and totally neglected the needs and specific requirements of small
and marginal farmers in rainfed conditions. The proposed organic farming is
emerging as a viable option for farmers under rainfed conditions.
The agricultural sector in Karnataka witnessed lot of changes during the last
decade due to the introduction of New Agricultural Policy in the entire country.
This resulted in the amendment of Land Reforms Act (1995) which was earlier
banned the transfer or sale of lands belonging to Dalits, removed this restriction.
This created an enabling environment for contract farming to flourish. So small
farms were not economically viable, it encouraged small and marginal farmers to
dispose their land. This development encouraged private investment in
agriculture and promoted ‘high-value' crops for exports at the expense of 'food
Karnataka State, the second largest state, which is reeling under drought for third
successive season. This graphically captures the priority and commitment of the
state towards rainfed regions of marginal and small farmers.
In this situation, we propose to initiate work on organic agriculture and native
seed conservation to address livelihood and food security/safety of the small,
marginal farmers and landless labourers.
Promotion of Stable – Organic Agriculture for small / marginal farmers living in
Kollegal taluk is the main purpose of this programme. These farmers are facing
critical situations from last 15 years. The reasons could be cited as the decrease
in the agricultural yields, farmers forgetting the traditional practices in agriculture,
total dependence on the agricultural inputs, especially on Sowing Seeds,
Fertilizers and Chemical Pesticides. Adding to this, untimely rains, non-
availability of quality sowing seeds, escalating costs of other agricultural inputs
and lack of basic needs required for cultivation has worsened the living situations
of the farmers.
The programme activities is directly related to enhancement of agricultural
production through adopting stable – organic practices in the field along with
orientation, training camps, field demonstration ect. Here attention will be given
to mixed cropping and crop diversity aspects for a specific/commercial crop of
The Programme area
In Kollegal taluk, MARTALLI Gram Panchayat has been identified to initiate this
programme, which has 20 villages and small hamlets under its fold. Here, Ragi,
Maize, Cotton, Groundnut, Sunflower, Sugarcane, Paddy, Turmeric and Topioka
are the main commercial crops and some of them will be cultivated under
irrigated systems. The programme concentrates on rainfed crops like Millets,
Groundnut, Cotton, Sunflower, Maize and few farmers cultivate paddy (only once
in the season, that too when water is available). Some of these crops are
contributing largely for the farm cash income. The introduction of mixed cropping
practices will address the issue of food security/safety.
3. Net work and Linkages:
Anisha constantly interacts with committed organic and natural farmers,
professionals etc. as it is started recently we will build more linkages with other
organisations and groups.
a) Promoting and supporting the use of locally made organic agricultural
b) Focussing on Soil and Water Conservation and stable agricultural
practices through orientation camps
c) Improving the yield and addressing the food security aspects for
small/marginal farmers, landless labourers in the programme area
d) Initiating collection and multiplication of native seeds of grains, pulses
etc in the farmers field to improve the quality of seeds and to increase
the availability of specific required seeds
e) Organic Kitchen Gardening for both farmers and landless labourers
towards increasing economic returns to the farmers and to address the
food security of these sections
f) Orienting the communities towards restoration of natural resources
g) To sensitize and conscentize the youths, students and women related
to consumer rights and conserving natural resources
h) Doing a research study on the health impacts on human beings by
a) Conduct baseline survey in 20 villages in the first phase
Preparation of questionnaires
Identifying the villages and the target community
PRA among the community
b) Orientation and Preliminary Training
• Cluster level training for select farmers - (interactive sessions
with farmers, understanding the local problems faced by the
• Specific to pests and diseases of the crops
• Seed treatment before sowing
• Management of nutrients, pests and diseases along with soil
and water conservation methods.
c) Infield training, demonstration on alternative methods of improving the
health of the soil, plant growth, control of pest
Sand manure (Cow urine) etc
d) Preparatory work for kharif season
• Ploughing and sowing activities
• Composting – improving farm yard manure, making of
composts, application of farm yard manure in the field
• Organising seeds – procuring quality seeds and its treatment
• Water and soil conservation
• Trees & green manures to enhance bio-diversity and
e) Indigenous Seed conservation
• Identifying farmers who posses native seeds
• Collection and conservation of seeds from different eco
• Seed related information collection
• Seed multiplication in selected farms, farmer to farmer seed
exchange, school children through community farm etc
• Opening seeds and grains bank in villages
f) Promoting kitchen gardening for identified families
• Encouraging women to initiate kitchen gardening
• Providing native vegetable seeds
g) organising sensitizing workshops for students, youths and women
h) Research / Study on the impact of chemical pesticides on the health of
6. Expected outcomes
The following outcomes are planned during the course of the project period -
1. Increase in the a. Increase in preparation of compost and other
number of farmers organic inputs.
practice organic farming b. Increased attendance in regular meetings
c. Visits and queries on organic agriculture in other
organic farms and institutions promoting organic
2. Organic agriculture for the families consumption
3. Consumption of a. Reduction in purchases from the market.
quality organic products b. Number of varieties available and consumed
by farmer families locally and increase in number of days fed from land.
4. Increase in technical a. No.of farmers practising sustainable agriculture
literacy rate practices, like compost, non-pesticidal management
b. No.of farmers attending meetings and training
c. Reduction in synthetic pesticides and residues.
5. Reduction in migration Increased number of farmers on farm working days.
of agricultural labourers
6. Improved crop a. Better economic returns and higher productivity.
productivity and steady b. Reduction in debt.
period c. Availability of agriculture products for household
consumption and reduction in purchase from market.
7.Increased soil fertility a. Improved crop productivity.
b. Reduction of synthetic fertilisers.
c. Large number of farmers adopting sustainable
agriculture practices like composting etc.
8. Increased bio diversity a. Increase in the crops cultivated.
b. mixed cropping system.
9. Increased access to a. Reduction in generation of seeds.
seed, reduction in b. Reduction in fluctuation in yield.
dependency of bought in
10. Increased generation a. Less migration.
of employment on-farm b. On farm activities done on time by the farmers.
11. Less hospital reduction in illness related to chemical agriculture
12. Improved health of Better ability to bear the work load, Not falling sick