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Around 1000 farmers benefit from Tasar Project of Tata Steel Foundation in Bamnipal

Bamnipal: In its continuous commitment to nurture sustainable livelihoods and biodiversity conservation, Tata Steel Foundation (TSF) has been promoting Tasar-based livelihoods in the Bamnipal region. This initiative aims to create a self-sustaining, biodiversity-rich ecosystem through the establishment of Tasar cultivation zones, providing invaluable livelihood opportunities.

Since its commencement in fiscal year 2015, this initiative has achieved significant progress, positively impacting around 1000 farmers across 5 Gram Panchayats in Harichandanpur and 7 Gram Panchayats in Danagadi and Sukinda. It has provided them with alternative income sources and enhanced their overall quality of life. The program’s primary goal is to create a self-sustaining, biodiverse ecosystem from Harichandanpur to Mangalpur by establishing Tasar cultivation zones, fortifying the entire value chain.

Gurucharan Birua, a resident of Jhumkapatia village in Rasol Panchyat, Harichandanpur Block, says, “One needs to understand the right process of cultivation. I had no formal training before. What our forefathers were following was not up to the mark; hence, we could never generate a good income. But after receiving proper training through Tata Steel Foundation, I adopted scientific rearing methods, ultimately boosting my income.”

Previously, farmers earned around 15,000-20,000 per season. After the support from Tata Steel Foundation, the average income for a farmer has now increased to 35,000-40,000 per season, doubling their previous earnings.

Driven by a strong commitment to community development, TSF has played a pivotal role in the success of this initiative. The Foundation has actively supported farmers through training and capacity building, host plant patch maintenance, seed multiplication techniques, Tasar silk yarn extraction, farm input assistance, institution building, and essential infrastructure development.

“Tata Steel Foundation, in strategic collaboration with the Sericulture Department and district administration, is fostering the revival of the Tasar Sericulture sector in Jajpur. Through the cultivation of new host plants, implementation of scientific rearing practices, and empowerment of farmers, this alliance promises not just silk but also a tapestry of prosperity for the communities in Jajpur,” said Gobardhan Pradhan, Secretary, Tasar Rearers Cooperative Society, Sukinda.

To ensure the seamless execution of this transformative project, a tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been formally signed. This MoU unites the Handloom, Textile & Handcraft Department of Odisha, the District Administration of Jajpur, and Tata Steel Foundation, working together for sustainable development.

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