Kottayam pilots silent revolution in ‘organic living’ in Kerala

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on March 04, 2018 Published on March 04, 2018

‘Jaivam’ educates on chemical-free farm practices

Kottayam, the ‘land of lakes, latex and letters’ in Kerala and the first district in the country to achieve total literacy, is at it again.

Referred to also as the capital of the plantation country, it is now piloting a silent revolution in organic living, at the behest of the Mahatma Gandhi University headquartered there.

House visits on

The Inter University Centre for Organic Farming and Sustainable Agriculture at the University is driving the massive programme.

Titled ‘Jaivam,’ this is a unique public education programme on organic means of living and chemical-free farm practices covering each household in the district.

According to Sabu Thomas, Vice-Chancellor-in-charge, the project has so far covered 4,13,214 households through house visits by trained volunteers.

The 9,400 volunteers drawn from the National Service Scheme have participated in 118 camps to cover 71 grama panchayats and six municipalities in the district.

The pending 12,147 houses will be covered before March end. Pilot camps have been held outside Kottayam as part of a proposal to take Jaivam to other parts of State.

Global organic meet

The university is organising a Global Organic Meet from April 21 to 24 at CMS College, Kottayam, as part of the project. It will also include an international seminar on ‘emerging trends in organic farming and sustainable agriculture,’ Thomas said.

Jaivam project was conceived as complimentary to the larger Haritha Keralam Mission of the State government, Thomas said.

It is being implemented by a high-level committee under the chairmanship of PK Harikumar, member of the Syndicate, and MR Unni, Registrar, general convener.

Thomas said Jaivam will showcase the commitment of the university to transfer the knowledge generated in laboratories to the common man. He was hopeful it would set a new bench mark in the university-community engagement.

Harikumar said studies indicate that the very survival of the humanity is dependent on availability of toxic-free food, water, air and earth.

“We have the responsibility to protect the environs not only for our own sake but also for posterity. Jaivam intends to propel these ideas into the minds of the people.”

According to Unni, Jaivam is the first of its kind to be organised by a university and among the largest public education programmes ever undertaken.

G Sreekumar, coordinator, Jaivam, said a specially prepared handbook on organic way of living is being distributed to all households. A mobile app has been developed to ensure that the programme is implemented in an efficient manner.

Published on March 04, 2018
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