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Rythu Sadhikara Samstha: Andhra Pradesh to Train 11,000 Ryots in Natural Farming

The State government would teach 11,000 farmers under the Rythu Sadhikara Samstha (RySS) over a five-year period in a first-of-its-kind programme to raise awareness about natural farming among all farmers in the State.

Shivam Dwivedi
Rythu Sadhikara Samstha: Andhra Pradesh to Train 11,000 Ryots in Natural Farming
Rythu Sadhikara Samstha: Andhra Pradesh to Train 11,000 Ryots in Natural Farming

To tackle climate change, it has been planned to employ at least one farmer scientist in each of the State's 10,800 Rythu Bharosa Kendras (RBKs) as a part of the program.

RySS has first recruited 200 mentors from the agricultural community to train them. Candidates with an intermediate diploma are qualified for the natural farming course. The undergraduate programme will be divided into eight semesters over four years and two months.

Candidates will be assessed in theory, practice, and research. After completing the training, the farmer scientists will be sent out to make their villages more climate-resilient and to encourage other farmers to practice natural farming.

"Farmers will be trained in Pulivendula with the support of the Indo German Global Academy for Agroecology, Research and Learning (IGGAARL). We plan to begin the programme on July 7th, the institute's first anniversary. This year, we will begin with 1,000 farmer scientists who will motivate other farmers in their villages to train 50 model farmers in each village," as per T Vijay Kumar, ex-officio chief secretary (natural farming) and executive vice-chairman of RySS.

"We are attempting to form alliances with universities in Europe, Australia, and the United States in order to strengthen the notion." It should be emphasized that IGGAARL in Pulivendula is sponsored by the German government. It had approved a €20 million grant for the research academy, the largest investment ever provided by the German government to a single institution for the development of farmer scientists.

"IGGAARL is currently training mentors in Guntur for seven days," said RySS senior consultant G Muralidhar. Later, at the Pulivendula campus, they will receive immersion and theoretical training."  Dr. KS Varaprasad, another RySS senior consultant, noted, "The course teaches natural farming in the field as well as in classrooms and also experiments in the agriculture field."

"Candidates will perform research methodological experiments. Our goal is for farmers to earn Rs 25,000 to Rs 50,000 per month from natural farming while also making the village climate resilient," he added.

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