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Transforming Animal Waste into ‘GOLD’-Case Study on Vermicompost


Environmental degradation is a major threat confronting the world, and the rampant use of chemical fertilizers contributes largely to the deterioration of the environment through depletion of fossil fuels, generation of carbon dioxide (CO2) and contamination of water resources. It leads to loss of soil fertility due to imbalanced use of fertilizers that has adversely impacted agricultural productivity and causes soil degradation. Now there is a growing realization that the adoption of ecological and sustainable farming practices can only reverse the declining trend in the global productivity and environment protection. On one hand tropical soils are deficient in all necessary plant nutrients and on the other hand large quantities of such nutrients contained in domestic wastes and agricultural by products are wasted. It is estimated that in cities and rural areas of India nearly 700 million ton organic wastes is generated annually which is either burned or land filled. Such large quantities of organic wastes generate also pose a problem for safe disposal. Most of these organic residues are burned currently or used as land fillings. In nature’s laboratory there are a number of organisms (micro and macro) that have the ability to convert organic waste into valuable resources containing plant nutrients and organic matter, which are critical for maintaining soil productivity. Microorganisms and earthworms are important biological organisms helping nature to maintain nutrient flows from one system to another and also minimize environmental degradation. The earthworm population is about 8–10 times higher in uncultivated area. This clearly indicates that earthworm population decreases with soil degradation and thus can be used as a sensitive indicator of soil degradation. In this report a simple biotechnological process, which could provide a ‘win-win’ solution to tackle the problem of safe disposal of waste as well as the most needed plant nutrients for sustainable productivity is described.


Background of Sabarkantha District 

Nearly 80% of the population of Sabarkantha District, Gujarat, resides in rural areas and earns their living through agriculture based activities, animal husbandry and dairying. These livelihood options result in the accumulation of large amount of recyclable organic wastes in the form of cow dung, agricultural crop residues etc. However the lack of waste segregation practices among villagers results in discarding of such organic and recyclable waste along with non-organic toxic waste. As a result, essential raw materials that can be used for preparing nutrient-rich natural manure for farming are lost and farmers are compelled to use chemical fertilizers that result in environmental degradation, are more expensive and increase artificial chemical levels in plants. Furthermore, the absence of a dedicated waste segregation and collection effort also results in the piling up of such waste near rural houses inviting growth of harmful insects and bacteria that affect human health.

Integrated Watershed Management Programme at Sabarkantha District 

Recognizing these opportunity in rural waste management practices of Sabarkantha, the District Watershed Development Unit (DWDU) has taken as a livelihood activity in various project of Batch I,II & III as (Individual or group SHG) for recycling agriculture and animal husbandry waste into nutritional organic manure through the method of vermi-composting.

Fig. 1 : Vermicompost Unit

Fig. 2 : Vermi compost unit with side net



Vermi-composting is a simple biotechnological process of composting, in which certain species of earthworms are used to enhance the process of waste conversion and produce a better end product. Vermi-composting differs from composting in several ways. It is a mesophilic process, utilizing microorganisms and earthworms that are active at 10–32°C (not ambient temperature but temperature within the pile of moist organic material). The process is faster than composting; because the material passes through the earthworm gut, a significant but not yet fully understood transformation takes place, whereby the resulting earthworm castings (worm manure) are rich in microbial activity and plant growth regulators, and fortified with pest repellence attributes as well! In short, earthworms, through a type of biological alchemy, are capable of transforming “animal wastes” into ‘gold’. 

Improved soil physical, chemical and biological properties 

Studies on vermin-compost indicate that it increases macrospore space ranging from 50 to 500µm, resulting in improved air-water relationship in the soil which favourably affect plant growth. The application of organic matter including vermin-compost favourably affects soil pH, microbial population and soil enzyme activities. It also reduces the proportion of water-soluble chemical species, which cause possible environmental contamination.


Individuals/SHG beneficiaries has given HDPE bed for vermi-composting, organic waste is collected at a place and treated with adequate moisture. After this treatment, earthworms are mixed with the waste in order to allow them to feed on the matter. Over a short period of time (45 days) the worms break down the organic matter in the vermi-compost unit, and leave behind nutrient rich substance which provides many benefits, for the soil condition of sabarkantha districts which varies from Hilly area hard stony soil to black cotton soil, silty loam to morrhum soil from Khedbrahma to Prantij and Himmatnagar to Bayad.

Fig. 3 : Collection of vermicompost

Fig. 4 : Screening of compost



There are 9 talukas and 23 IWMP projects are being implemented in Sabarkantha district. The vermi-compost units have been taken in all 23 IWMP projects. In Batch I & II projects production of vermicompost has started and utilised by the beneficiaries in their own field. Various trainings were conducted in coordination with KVK Khedbrahma and Maize Research centre Bhiloda to generate awareness among farmers.


Table No. 1 Details of Vermi-compost production in all Batches 

Name of Batch
Unit Installed (Individual or SHG groups)
Production of Vermi-Compost Unit from  Installed (Individual or SHG groups)
Total Production of Vermi- Compost (in Kg) for 1 cycles
Selling of Vermi-Compost in local market and village
Batch I
All framers has used in own agricultural land
Batch II
All are use the in own field
Batch III
Production not received


Total production from vermi-compost bed is 179436 kg from batch I & II batch and from batch III production is not yet received. Considering Rs 2 per kg market price of vermicompost, the total implicit income is Rs 3.5 lakh approximately.


Table No. 2 Details Crop Production 

Name of Crop
Nos. of beneficiaries
Total Area cropping (ha)
Approx. Production  (kg/ha)
Batch- I & II


The use of vermicompost has increased soil fertility and reduces the cost of cultivation by substituting chemical fertilisers. With this intervention 84 farmers cultivated 36 ha of land using vermicompost.


  • The production cycle increased from estimated 45 days to 60 days and in some cases it increased to 90 days. 
  • Less awareness among the community for small activities like sprinkling of water timely, turning of compost upside down to speed up the process of production. 
  • The package of practices given to the members required closer monitoring and identification of training needs. 
  • Less sensitivity towards practicing the package of practices in production during the first cycle resulting into to breakage of cycle, increased cycle period. 
  • Proper use of the vermi-compost and still used the chemical fertilizer along with it. 



Earthworm serves as “nature’s ploughman” and form nature’s gift to produce good humus, which is the most precious material to fulfil the nutritional needs of crops. The utilization of vermicompost results in several benefits to farmers, industries, environment and overall national economy.

To farmers:
  • Less reliance on purchased inputs of nutrients leading to lower cost of production. 
  • Increased soil productivity through improved soil quality. 
  • Better quantity and quality of crops There is huge scope of promotion of vermicompost in this District. 

DWDU is actively participating for promotion of this green technology and farmers are also gradually interested to convert their farming processes.

Contributors: Sidharth Sing Bisen (Technical Expert); Sunil Patel (MDT Agri)

Promoting Tissue culture in Navsari through IWMP


Knowing Tissue Culture: 

Tissue culture is a process that involves exposing plant tissue to a specific regimen of nutrients, hormones, and lights under sterile, in vitro conditions to produce many new plants, each a clone of the original mother plant, over a very short period of time. Tissue culture plants are characterised by disease free growth, a more fibrous, healthier root system, a bushier branching habit, and a higher survival rate.

There are three main steps to the tissue culture process:
  1. STAGE I is the initiation phase. It concerns the establishment of plant tissue in vitro by sterilising the material and initiating it into culture. 
  2. STAGE II is the multiplication phase. At this stage, the in vitro plant material is re-divided and placed in a medium with plant growth regulators that induce the proliferation of multiple shoots. This process is repeated many times until the number of plants desired is reached. 
  3. STAGE III is the root formation phase. It involves the introduction of hormones to induce rooting and the formation of complete plantlets. 

Project Background: 

Kandha Project is located in Vansda Block, Navsari district of Gujarat State which has been sanctioned in the year of 2010-11 by Government of India. The project is a cluster of six micro-watersheds. The total project area of the watershed is about 6725.40 ha, of which 4000 ha has been undertaken to be treated under Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP). The watershed Programme has covered seven villages namely Kandha, Bartad, Bedmal, Kamalzari, Anklachh, Khanpur and Satimal. Tribal communities are the primary inhabitants of the village.

Fig. 1 : Discussion with farmer

 Before intervention: 

Devjeebhai Jhuliabhai Deshmukh who is the beneficiary of Banana Demo Plot belongs to Bedmaal Village(Dungri Faliya). Earlier he was dependent on growing traditional crops like Paddy, Nagli, Pulses, Pigeon Pea using traditional methods. He also used to grow the traditional variety of Banana (Lokhandi variety) from which he was getting an income of Rs.30,000 to Rs.40,000 per annum. The production from one acre (o.4 ha) was nearly 4500-5000 kg. Due to non-uniform bunch formation the market price was nearly Rs 150 per mann (20kg). As a traditional banana farmer he is having a sound knowledge of banana cultivation. To make proper comparison between traditional and tissue culture farming Jhuliabhai was selected for demonstration plot.


IWMP intervention: 

A plot of 0.4 Ha. (one acre) was undertaken and then ploughing and levelling was done. Organic fertilizers were bought from Government Co-operative Society to increase soil fertility. Along with organic manure, chemical fertilizers were also used. The variety of Banana- Grane 9 has been planted. The cost of each plant including transportation cost is Rs.15. Thus a total of 750 Plants were bought from Gandevi Market at a total cost of Rs.11,250. These plants were planted in the month of Feb 2013. Drip Irrigation has also been installed in his field by converging with GGRC Department. The total cost of Drip was Rs.54296 out of which the contribution of Rs.19,864 was from IWMP and Rs.34,432 from GGRC respectively.

Monitoring on continuous basis was done by the project team and DWDU. MDT Agri and WDT Agri gave information on regular basis about the adoption of time to time practices. For proper cultivation of banana through tissue culture extreme care must be taken for initial three months of planting regarding timely irrigation and pesticides sprays, otherwise yield will be affected. The soils pH was also checked timely as pH more than 7.5 are not suitable for tissue culture.

Benefits of growing bananas through Tissue Culture Method to the Beneficiary:
  • Plants are absolutely free from diseases and pests, so there is less field mortality. 
  • Early maturity of crop- maximum land use is possible in low land holding areas. 
  • Increase in yield ( nearly 2 MT per acre) 
  • Produces are more uniform in shape and size, thus easily marketable with better price realisation   


Flow chart of processes involved:


After Watershed’s Intervention: 

After 9-10 months 325 mann (1 mann = 20 kg) of bananas were produced which were sold at a rate of Rs. 230 per mann. Thus after selling 325 mann he has received Rs. 74,750 as total revenue. Hence there is an increase of revenue of Rs.20000 to 25000 per acre for the farmer.

According to Devjeebhai Jhuliabhai Deshmukh, “growing bananas through tissue culture method had allowed efficient use of land and resources, realizing higher yield and net profit, easy practices, improvement in fruit quality, easy and good harvest which have ultimately lead to an increase in income”.  

Fig. 2 : Distribution of sapling

Fig. 3 : Planting of sapling

Fig. 4 : Growth stage of banana

Fig. 5 : Before harvesting

Way Forward: 

A tie-up with KVK Navsari is made to do some research on the stem part of banana for the purpose of making thread. Hence the plot is under direct supervision of KVK. With this successful intervention DWDU is now promoting tissue culture in other project areas. Various training are also being planned to generate awareness about tissue culture among the banana growers. There is a huge scope of tissue culture in near future and DWDU is acting as a dynamic partner for its promotion.

Contributors: Rashmi Sinku (Technical Expert); Rahul Vekariya (MDT Agri); Hardik Desai (MDT Agri); Rashik Ganvit (WDT Agri)

WEAVING DREAMS -A case of Shree Khodiyar Bachat Mandal, Jamnagar


Agriculture contributes nearly 14.5 % of India’s GDP but more than 60% of workforce is workforce depends on agriculture for their livelihood. Hence agriculture is considered as the backbone of India. Being home to more than 17% of world’s population and due to constant increase in population at an alarming rate the pressure on agricultural land is being increasing constantly. On the contrary agricultural land is reducing due to industrialization and growing number of cities, thus creating job opportunities for skilled and unskilled labors. Due to all these reasons and changing life style migration is a major challenge for the rural economy. Although there are different opinions about positive and negative effect of migration, but in long term migration is not a solution. So there is an urgent need to generate alternative employment within the villages to stop migration.

Jamnagar is known as Halar in Saurashtra region. It is situated at the sea coast of Gujarat. Natural calamities like uneven rainfall, drought, and earth quake affect the farmers. Kharachia village of Jodiya block is situated near the sea coast. Total population of the village is 1860 comprising of major communities like Patel, Rajput, Bharwad, Koli and Harijan. Rainfed agriculture is the major source of livelihood in this village. Fadsar, Kharachia, Utbet sampar and Zinzuda are the 4 villages selected under IWMP-10 (Integrated Watershed Management Programme- Fadsar cluster). According to village survey conducted before preparation of Detailed Project Report, after the monsoon season due to lack of work agriculture and casual labors migrates to nearby cities and women were confined to stay back at home without any work. Women could not go for work as per the socially imposed structure. During survey and focus group discussion with the villagers it was elicited that women want to do home based works without hindering their daily household works.

After providing various concepts building training for SHGs, Shree Khodiyar Bachat Mandal was formed with 10 members in May 2012 with monthly small savings of Rs. 300 (@ Rs. 30 per member at Dena Bank, Aamran branch. Before finalizing livelihood activity under IWMP, various group level and village level meeting were conducted by the watershed development team. As there is a predominant demand of the sewing work for the local market and according to the requirement of the group for home based work, sewing activity was selected for this group.

In November 2013 a memorandum of understanding was signed between VWC and SHG to start the activity. Ten sewing machines were purchased at the cost of Rs 6200/- each and Rs. 30000/- for purchasing procuring raw materials from nearby market at Dhrol, Aamran and Morbi.

One month training and workshop programme on sewing activity was arranged by the Project Implementing Agency (DWDU) for imparting necessary skills to the SHG. Other trainings were also conducted in coordination with Vikas charitable trust as per demand of SHG members with support of VWC and WDT members.

Fig. 1 : Training on sewing of Shri Khodiyar Saving Mandal
After implementing the activity there is remarkable growth of their business. Now after 3 months the group is able to earn Rs3000 (approx) per month. The work orders of items like stitching uniform (150 rs/piece), blouse (120 rs/piece), fall (30 rs/item), dress material (100 rs/piece) from nearby blocks has been increasing constantly. The group has also started to make cushion cover (80 rs/piece) and carry bag (30 rs/piece) to sell in their own village and nearby villages.

Fig. 2 : Sewing activity of Shri Khodiyar Saving Mandal

According to the president Jyotiba Parakramsinh Jadeja of Shree Khodiyar Bachat Mandal : “All of us are women residing in Kharachia village belong to other backward caste (OBC). Our literacy level is very low and our family is totally dependent on our husbands, who were the sole breadwinners of our families. Thus, managing the household expenses was always a major problem and we had to slowly cut down our food expenses in order to meet the children’s education expenditure. Now after starting sewing business our economic status has increased as we have started contributing to our family”

This small initiative has brought a great economical and social change in their lives. With the extra source of income the women are not only contributing to their family income but also started lending to other members. The group members have started to participate in the decision making process inside their houses. Even in social gathering and Gram Sabha’s the group has started their participating actively. Considering the escalating demand of the products the group is now planning to expand their business. This micro entrepreneurship is not only helping this village to reduce migration but also acting as a role model for women empowerment.

Contributors: Smit Hingrajiya (Technical Expert), WDT Team (IWMP-10), DWDU Jamnagar

Anusuya Ben- A Budding Entrepreneur from Adivada


Luhar Anusuya Ben, a female resident of remote village Adivada which is a part of Becharaji taluka, belongs to a deeply conservative family where she is the head of the family. The idea of women leaving their homes to earn livelihood is inconceivable in this strata of the society. Over the last few years, the economic situation of her family had gradually declined to an eventual standstill as they are doing labour work to survive. Anusuya ben ultimately decided to explore alternative means of income generation to provide her children a better living standard.

The total project area of the Adivada (IWMP-4) village is about 793.5 Ha of which 393.5 Ha is proposed to be treated under Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP). The nearest town is Bechraji which is about 10 to 20 Km from watershed area, which is well connected by pucca road. The project area lies in nearest boundary of patan district. Patel, Thakor, Rabai, Harijan, Darbar community resides in the village.

As Anusuya ben had the skills of making handicraft items, she was chosen as the livelihood beneficiary of the IWMP project. She had been given the training through Chuvad Gram Vikas Trust for making the handicraft items for one week. She had found the training useful for adding values to her skills of making handicraft and marketing with business representatives of different locale. As per Anusuya Ben “ The training took me a step ahead involved in making handicrafts of decorative items, how to improve upon their quality and how to meet the demand.”

Fig. 1 : Displaying Handicraft Items during National conference team visit (Rajasthan team) at Mehsana

For initiating the work she had been given a financial support of Rs. 10,000 under IWMP Project during Aug 2013. From that money she purchased the raw materials required for making handicraft items from Mahesana & Ahmedabad at wholesale price. She prepared the handicraft items at home like decorative wall hangings, door hangings, pearl anklets, bangles etc. She sells her handicrafts items at the neighboring villages of Adivada and also manages to bring order from the customer easily.

Her business has been doing well and she would like to continue developing it by streamlining the goods and products that are high in demand. Anusuya Ben business generates Rs. 50/- to Rs 70/- on per item. Every month she sells around 50 handicraft products which fetches her Rs. 2500/- to Rs. 3500/- per month respectively. A portion of her income is invested in the business while the rest contributes to the household expenses.

According to Anusuya ben : “Life has been good. I get enough money to sustain my family and I get to meet people and organize my Store of handicraft items on project occasions at Adivada Village. It has made me more responsible and improved the financial situation of my family.” 

Fig. 2 : Display of items in front of Anusuya Ben's home

Although it is a very small step taken for livelihood augmentation but it has bring a remarkable positive impact in her life. For future prospect of her business DWDU Mehsana is continuously involved for capacity building and scaling up the business.

Contributor: Bhatt Rajal Ben (WDT CM), Choudhary Balwant Bhai (WDT Agri), Deepali Solanki (Technical Expert), Arun Adhikari (Technical Expert)

Cultivating the Difference - A Case of Crop Demonstration in Suraj Village


Basic village information: Suraj village is located in Becharaji taluka of Mehsana district of Gujarat. The total geographical area of the village is 1195.90 Ha. Generally the region experiences irregular rainfall with an average of 400 mm. The topography of the land is flat with medium black soil.

Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP) had started its interventions in the village in 2009-10 (i.e. Batch I Projects). In IWMP 2 (Becharaji Project), there are 6 villages in which Suraj village is one of them. The total geographical area of the watershed is 5681.70 Ha out of which 5000 Ha was proposed for treatment under IWMP.

Cash crops such as cotton and castor are cultivated approximately in an area of 80 Ha of the village. Here, the average yield of cotton is 500 kg./Ha against the average district production of 640 kg/Ha (source: agri.gujarat.gov.in as on 2009-10). Cotton yield had been declining in this village despite increasing dose of NPK fertilizers every year.

In absence of sufficient knowledge, farmers here were used to practice their own way of farming, which includes

  • Insufficient FYM (Farm Yard Manure) application 
  • Single tillage 
  • High rate of seed application (with the mindset of perceiving higher yields) 
  • Irregular sowing & fertilizer application (high basal dose)

In order to address this issue, an on-farm-trial was taken up in IWMP DPR to demonstrate the benefits of scientific farming of cotton. The agriculture staff of the Multi disciplinary team had organised several Gram Sabhas to motivate villagers to come forward for taking up the on-field-trial of cotton on his farm. The villagers then suggested the name of enthusiastic Shri Nadoda Jagmaal Bhai Juva bhai. He is a progressive farmer of this village having 1.06 Ha of agricultural land. Earlier Jagmaal bhai used to advocate heavy doses of fertilizers and pesticides to enhance crop productivity but did not achieve the required production.

Out of 1.06 Ha, 0.47 Ha of his agricultural land was used for crop demonstration of cotton on his field while leaving the other part for his regular farming. This was done to show the clear difference between the newly adopted scientific farming and the traditional one. He attended all the meetings and trainings related to scientific agriculture practices coordinated with the help of Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Kherva.

Initially the KVK gave the farmers a detail account about crop demonstration technique and sowing measures. The highlights of training are as follows
  1. During kharif season, deep tillage should be done
  2. 6 to 8 tractors of FYM to be applied on the fields
  3. After applying FYM, once again tillage should be done
  4. Sowing should be done at suitable time
The methodology of crop demonstration goes as follows: “Soil testing was done for major macro and micronutrients. Based on soil testing results fertilizer schedule was prepared (120:90:45 for demo plot & farmer applied 128: 92:45). With the help of a rotavator, crop residues were incorporated into the soil. Sowing was done in the 1st week of June 2012 with a spacing of 5 feet between the rows and 2.5 between plants and the seed rate was 0.3 kg/ha (therefore 0.6kg applied in 0.47 Ha). A basal dose of DAP was then applied to the demo plot (4.5:11.5:0) and farmers plot (36:92:0). The cost of fertilizer for demo plot accounted for Rs 8000/- ( FYM = Rs 6000/- & vermi compost = Rs 2000/-) whereas for farmer plot it was Rs 4000/- which accounts solely for FYM. The source of irrigation was kept same in both the plots.”

Fig. 1 : Shri Nadoda Jagmaal Bhai Juva bhai in front of demo plot

The post harvest comparison is mentioned below:

S. No
Demonstration Plot (0.47 Ha)
Farmer’s Plot    (0.59 Ha)
Quantity of Seeds (gm)
Crop duration  (in days)
Cotton Balls (No.)
Average weight per cotton ball (gm)
Cost of cultivation (Rs)



Vermi Compost


Yield (Kg)
Gross return (Rs.)
 (Market Price Rs 63.5/kg)
Net Return (Rs.)
Comparing Net Return per ha. (Rs.)

The crop demonstration plot, although less area than its counterpart, not only gave better yield but also provide higher remunerative returns (almost more than double). Having witnessed the results, more and more farmers are coming forward to adopt scientific farming method. The increasing number of farmers query and participation in training also depict the indirect impact of crop demonstration. As of now approximately 25 farmers have shown their interest to adopt scientific farming in their own fields. Further training plan has been made in coordination with the KVK to provide technical input to the interested farmers.

It can be said that crop demonstration under IWMP project in the village has surely made some difference in the cropping practices of the farmers and will continue to inspire in the near future.

Contributors: Desai Iswarbhai (WDT- Agri), Pankaj Raval (WDT-CM), Shri Nadoda Jagmaal Bhai Juva bhai (Beneficiary Farmer), Deepali Solanki (Technical Expert)

Abject Poverty to Agricultural Prosperity in Navapura of Surendranagar


Area Profile 

Surendranagar is a Saurashtra region district with 10,489 square kilometers of area. Surendranagar is also known as the "Entrance gate of the Saurashtra region”. 8.63% of the total population of the district belongs to the Scheduled Tribes and 12% belongs to the scheduled Castes.

Navapura Village falls under the Dasada Taluka of the district. Navapura is around 71 Km away from the district town. There are total 54 households in the village and are mainly agriculturists and also have animal husbandry as there secondary occupation.


Scarcity of the lifeline 

The entire water requirement of the village from irrigation to drinking water for Human and animals is mainly supplied from the village pond. Due to the siltation and depreciation of the pond bund the storage capacity of the pond is reduced resulting into huge scarcity of the water available for the villagers. In arrival of the situation irrigation support from the pond water has been stopped and thus the farmers practices rainfed agriculture mainly. With this less availability of green fodder for the livestock of the village had affected the milk production of the village. Due to this single crop a year and with less milk production the economical situation of the villagers was also striking the bell slowly.


DWDU Surendranagar has been implementing Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP) in the district and was acting as a district agency for the programme. Sanctioned in the year 2009-10 Navapura village was taken up as project village under IWMP-8 and Wild Ass Sanctuary, Dhrangadhra was appointed as the Project Implementation Agecy (PIA) for the project. IWMP has been working for Soil and Water conservation in a watershed area. As a part of participatory planning De-siltation of the village pond was taken on urgent basis under Entry Point Activity (EPA) head.



9193 CM de-siltation was done with in an expenditure of Rs. 3.56 lakhs from IWMP cost and the storage capacity of the village pond was increased to and the bund was strengthened with the excavation. Due to this the availability of water has irrigated near about 80 ha has increased and the total production of cumin were sought highest as near about 600 Qt. from the area the average productivity of the cumin is about 750 Kg/ha which is four times higher than average productivity of the village before the intervention. Out of total household 54 households practicing agriculture in the village and among them 26 farmer are getting irrigation water from the village pond. Before completion of the intervention the average income was near about Rs. 34,000/ ha. from cotton crop and after the availability of irrigation it went up to Rs. 43,500 and cropping pattern of the area has been changed due to availability of irrigation water. It also increased the milk production. Now the availability of fodder for the animal has gone up and it has been observed in increasing of milk production of the village. As per the villages survey, over three – forth of the farmers are found to be benefiting from this De-siltation of the village pond.


In these two years the project has changed the whole of Navapura from one of abject poverty and underdevelopment to prosperity and on the development path. Today, Navapura is a success story and inspirational model for water conservation measures. These activities have had a major impact on the area; and have changed the face Navapura village. The lost flora and fauna are returning and even the villagers are reaping its benefit. The impact of this project has been manifolds. It has checked soil erosion and has helped the soil to retain its moisture. Also, Fodder and Fuel wood is available a plenty. In fact with each year the prodution has grown and so has the distribution.

Assessment: The community participation has been the key to the success of Watershed Development Project in the Area. It was ensured all through the implementation of the project that the people’s enthusiasm and interest does not wane away after the initial euphoria. Most importantly, the project functionaries’ from the beginning was a distant spectator, only providing the technical inputs while actual nuisances of design, execution and management was left to the users committee. This micro-level planning has provided people with an opportunity of earning of managing the scheme and also given them the confidence that they can now do the government support. This project has truly been the project of the people, for the people and managed by the people. The project wasteland development project has raised hopes that wasteland can be made fertile and bring about prosperity to the area.”

Contributor: DWDU Surendranagar, Hariom Nirala (Technical Expert)

Women Empowerment and Self-sustainability through Watershed Project in LILIYA Taluka



Watershed management has emerged as an important intervention for supporting natural resource based livelihood mean in different agro-climatic regions in India and Gujarat. This case study is discussing the high level of community participation in watershed management. This programme is being implemented by the District Watershed development Unit, Amreli under the Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP). This intervention created an awareness and participation among women residing in the rural pockets of Amreli, which had empowered them to play a positive role in holistic development of themselves and the society. The user groups and self-help groups were also closely associated with economical issues, thus directly contributing to the economic and social development of Sanaliya village under Liliya Taluka, Dist. Amreli.


Role of Women 

Women have played an ‘invisible’ role for a long period of time in the economic development of rural areas, as they have been perceived as helpmates, wives and mothers, and as generally subservient to the dominant economic work of men, both in farming and outside it. The Self-Help Groups (SHGs) in micro watersheds have received much attention from the policy makers and others for their perceived ability to contribute significantly to the economic growth and poverty alleviation. These groups are homogenous groups having common interest who are dependent on the watershed area such as: landless laborers, agricultural laborers, rural women, shepherds, scheduled castes/tribes etc. Around 50 per cent of villagers who are directly or indirectly dependent on watersheds should generally be enrolled as members in the SHGs. Evidences show that the SHGs are formed mostly for Women-oriented activities.

Fig.2 : STUDY AREA: IWMP 7 (Batch II) Sanaliya Village, Liliya Taluka, District Amreli

District Watershed Development Unit,(DWDU),Amreli in its endeavor had facilitated the SHG “Shree Jee Self Help Group” in Sanaliya village lies under Kutana Cluster in IWMP-8 (Batch 2) in Liliya Taluka.
  • Name of SHG: Shree Jee Self Help Group 
  • Number of Members: 14 (ALL WOMEN) 
  • Date of Formation: 26/07/2011 
  • Status of Participants: APL Mission: To enhance and strengthen economical status of members. 


Introductory Level

At the very first stage of planning process of the cluster, Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA), was done with the help of the villagers and the Watershed Committee, in which a special meeting was held only Women in which information regarding SHG was put forward, and its members were decided duly on democratic pattern, after that SHG nomenclature was done, and the name of SHG "Shree Jee Self Help Group" was coined.


Activities Chosen

After the formation of the SHG a meeting was carried out to choose the activity(s) under the supervision of WDT-CME and Nodal of PIA and in this meeting the members were asked to interact with each other and to discuss what activity(s) to be carried out in the SHG. The thing which came out of the discussion was that to make different kinds of Home decoration handicraft as it was a tradition over here to gift it in marriages and other auspicious events. The members also said that there is a vast opportunity of selling these items as there is an availability of local market demand for these items.


Pre Activity Work

Before starting the Handicraft Activities a proper well structured training session was needed. The SHG members of Shree Jee SHG decided had undergone a comprehensive training in the nearby village of Godavadar. A local trainer is employed for the purpose. The SHG members went on to training in the day time and practiced the same at night. The training was organized for a month to enable them to gain expertise. The trainees of the SHG were certified by DWDU Amreli.

Fig.3 : Training to SHG

Fig.4 : SHG Members Practicing at Common Place

Fig.5 : Training and Practicing session of Handicraft Making by SHG Members

Fig.6 : Training Certificate Distribution

Fig.7 : Training Certificate Distribution


Post Activity

After the training and practicing session for one month the SHG members were now quiet familiar as well as well expertise with SHG activities as well as Handicraft making. Later on they started selling the handicraft items on small scale. Later with the increased familiarity and demand they went on to join hands with the "Ramapir SHG Group" functioning in "Bhurakhiya Village" under IWMP-10,Chhabhadiya Cluster to open a Handicraft selling shop near the famous "Bhurakhiya Hanuman Temple" which use to sell the handicraft items from different villages. It sells the products on Commission basis. The shop was opened on 11/02/2013.

Fig.8 : Handicraft Selling Shop at Bhurakhiya Hanuman Temple, Bhurakhiya Village, Lathi Taluka


Handicraft Store 

“The SHG’s participated in Gram Haat organized at Ahmedabad on 28/02/13 to 02/03/2013 and they sold items worth Rs.6000.Taking together of items sold at Amreli and Ahmedabad it constitutes of Rs.17000.”



The whole program not only made the women of Sanaliya village economically established but also boosts up Self Confidence and now they can achieve a greater responsibility in Society. The most pivotal thing to be marked here is the Decision Making role of them, in their socio-economic life. Indeed their success can be summarized as a role model for other Watershed intervene Livelihood activities.

Contributors: DWDU Amreli, Nischal Chudasama (Technical Expert)

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