Healing the Wounds of War-Changing Life Through Commercial Vegetable Farming

Posted on 27 Jul 2016 in GreenGrowth by Saurav

Jajarkot, is one of the highly war faced district from decades long Maoist war in Nepal.  Even within Jajarkot district, People from Jyamire Village Development Committee (VDC) faced all sorts of torture i.e. physical and mental torture from the both sides (Maoist and Government) of people. “Life was miserable and they were kept like a prisoners within their own home. Police and army used to come and go torturing till the last breath and Maoist used to come and go looting everything” ;  says, Man Bahadur Rana. Now, they do not have single second to think about those terrible moment as they keep doing busy to cultivate vegetables.

Mr. Man Bahadur Rana was the first to initiate production of vegetable as a commercial basis in Jyamire VDC where approx. 18 households residing. I became like an idiot and people considered me as if I have lost my mind when I first converted my paddy and maize fields into vegetable area. People made fun at me saying that conversion of productive land for paddy and maize is my stupid idea and my initiation to produce vegetable will be effortless” utters, Man Bahadur. Now, the time has changed and with the run of time, community people exposed with ground reality. People learned from him to be the commercial vegetable producers. Approx. all the households of Jyamire being involved in commercial production of seasonal and off season vegetable.  “Now, almost all the households earning NRs. 50-60 thousands by selling vegetables in one season” says, Ms.Bhabita Rana. “We have been gaining far better income from vegetable production comparing to our efforts and investments that we used to do for maize and paddy production” says, Ms. Rana cheerfully. “We could hardly be sustained from the production of paddy and maize. Now, we have handful of cash that even can be saved while sufficiently spending for schooling kids, buying cloths, purchasing meat and food items” further elaborate, Ms. Rana

It even did not take a year to recover them from the trauma. As a saying like “Good Intention Always Needs a Little Push” High Value Agriculture Project (HVAP) came up as a push factor into their life to bring a progressive change. In the year 2014, the project provided small grant (Post Production Fund-PPF) with of amount of NRs. 2,90,000 for commercial vegetable production. They have shown such a remarkable changes on production and improve livelihoods from such small support. Further commercialization and collective production and marketing, the project provided value chain fund of NRs. 7 Lakh 46 Thousand.

Now, each individual houses increased their land of production from 2-5 ropani where each individual houses earning 50-60 thousands in one season. Increased income from the not only increased their income but also improved their food culture. As an example, the initiator- Mr. Man Bahadur Rana and rest of the people used to eat rice and breads with salt and chillies. Now, the fresh vegetable can been seen cooking during lunch and dinner. Mr. Rana has been producing vegetables in 5 ropani land from which he is earning more than 3 Lakh in a year. With this income, he added 14 ropani land in potential area of Khalanda-Rimna road corridor. 

Marketing of vegetables is major constraints in Jyamire due to difficulty of road connection. Currently, they are selling vegetables in closest market at Rimna on their own. Selling individually while carrying in a Doko is a time consuming, says Rana. Hence, the entire group of people struggling to connect their village with road and increasing vegetable production land so the regional traders at Surkhet could come and proceed for bulk trading in their locality.

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