Livelihoods

January 2, 2017
Women have started playing the dhak, a big drum traditionally played only by men.

Drummer girls of Bengal step up with a new beat

Despite long neglect, the dhak might be getting a new lease of life as women have stormed a male bastion and have taken up playing Bengal’s traditional big drum

December 28, 2016
Marathwada suffers from a chronic shortage of water and rainfall is often scanty. (Photo by Harini Calamur)

It’s much better to dig than to build for water

Learning from some exemplary instances in drought-prone Marathwada, it makes sense for government programs to dig tanks and deepen streams for water sufficiency instead of building expensive structures

December 26, 2016
Komalam Ramachandran of Naduvilkara in Thrissur district and her son in front of the well in their house. (Photo by S. Gopikrishna Warrier)

Kerala fights drought with recharged wells

For a region that does not want for water, Kerala is extending a rainwater harvesting programme in the central district of Thrissur to all parts of the state following the recent droughts

December 19, 2016
Bhaskar Bhau Somamalik does not migrate any more to Mumbai in search of work. In one rabi season, he earns about Rs 50,000. (Photo by Nidhi Jamwal)

Palghar’s tribal farmers sow and sell as a collective to reap benefits

Collective farming is not only helping farmers sell their produce far and wide but has also arrested migration and increased the well-being of farmer families

December 16, 2016
A Maldhari with his Banni buffalos. (Photo by Athar Parvaiz)

Banni pastoralists see success in battle for survival

The Maldharis of the vast Banni grasslands in Gujarat show how people cope with enforced change caused either by natural forces or human intervention and how vulnerability can be turned into opportunity

December 14, 2016
A field laborer carrying paddy transplants in Tamil Nadu. (Photo by ADM Institute for the Prevention of Postharvest Loss)

Convenience drives farm practices more than sustainability

For all talk of sustainable farming practices than often entail increased drudgery, there is a clear trend that farmers are swayed by convenience and ease of use more than anything else

December 9, 2016
A recently dug farm pond with no water even after the monsoon rains. (Photo by Nidhi Jamwal)

Faulty farm ponds pockmark tribal villages in Palghar

Constructed under the Maharashtra government’s Jalyukt Shivar scheme to end water scarcity in the state, these structures hold no water. Some were washed away in the first rains, making a mockery of the implementation

December 7, 2016
Locally bred goats fetch a regular income. (Photo by Sharada Balasubramanian)

Integrated organic farming revives Nemmeli’s fields

A holistic method of organic farming has reversed the harm reached to Nemmeli village due to high-intensity, high-inputs agriculture. It has also helped in pushing back soil salinity

December 2, 2016
Those in the supply chain of perishable farm goods are suffering the most. (Photo by Patrik M. Loeff)

Small vegetable and poultry farmers severely affected by demonetization drive

Three weeks into the surprise announcement by the government to withdraw high denomination currency notes from circulation, it is now clear that producers of perishable commodities such as vegetable and poultry have been seriously impacted

November 30, 2016

Trade tumbles at Sonepur cattle fair after demonetization

The severe scarcity of currency notes have resulted in business at India’s largest cattle fair, which is conducted entirely in cash, crashing to a halt with most sellers returning home empty handed