Categorical Information Service
KOTTAYAM: For the primary time in a decade, Methran Kayal in Kumarakom is gearing up for a second paddy cultivation in the identical yr. That is the end result of years of farmers’ wrestle to transform the barren wetland to a high-yielding paddy polder. That spectacular turnaround can also be a testomony to farmers’ resilience, their relentless protests to avoid wasting over 400 acres of land from the clutches of land mafia.
Until 2008, farmers had been cultivating paddy at Methran Kayal (Methran, Malayalam for Metropolitan, refers back to the late Malankara Metropolitan Mor Dionysius V Joseph Pulikkottil). Through the years, many individuals stop farming as a result of losses they suffered and the dearth of help for the sector. Unable to proceed farming with out the collective effort, different too left the sector. Unused, the realm changed into a barren wetland. Sensing a potential gold mine, the land mafia quickly closed in. Since Kumarakom is a tourism hotspot, realty majors wished to develop the land for tourism actions.
In 2016, Chennai-based RakIndo Builders approached the state authorities in search of permission to fill the land for its proposed Kumarakom eco-tourism village venture. The then Oommen Chandy-led authorities’s order giving a inexperienced mild to the venture ignited an argument. Succumbing to protests from farmers and others, the state was pressured to withdraw the order.
The farmers’ battle, nevertheless, was removed from over. RakIndo, by then, had bought 378 acres of land and refused to supply it when the Pinarayi Vijayan-led authorities determined to renew paddy cultivation.
Undeterred, farmers resumed paddy farming in October 2016 with the help of then Agriculture Minister VS Sunil Kumar. Later, the corporate joined in and leased its land for cultivation.
Now, Methran Kayal is all set to show the single-time cultivation to double-time cultivation for the primary time since its reclamation, mentioned B Sunal, agriculture officer in Kumarakom, who was a drive behind the transformation. “The state authorities has determined to start out second season farming in Methran Kayal as a part of the ‘Njangalum Krishiyilekk’ (We too are into farming) initiative. As a part of this, work on strengthening the outer bunds in some areas is progressing. We hope to start out the cultivation by June 15,” he mentioned.