Srinagar: Farmers in Jammu and Kashmir’s Budgam district wear a broad smile on their faces after harvesting bumper paddy crops this year thanks to the timely rainfall and better weather conditions.
Men and women are busy in the thriving paddy fields of Paris Abad in Budgam harvesting the crop with joy amid pleasant weather conditions.
There is hustle and bustle in the village all across as women folk transport Kashmiri tea in traditional “Samowar” or teapot and lunch for their family members who are busy in harvesting the crop in fields.
“This year due to sufficient rainfall farmers are happy as they are harvesting a bumper crop,” Ali Mohammad, a farmer told UNI on Friday.
He said that “the crop is beyond our expectations this year and I will not have to buy and bring rice from shopkeepers”.
However, he expressed dismay over most of the farmers using their land for commercial purposes and planting Apple trees in the paddy fields that are squeezing the size of agriculture land every passing year and the trend continues.
Nisar Ahmad, a farmer from Trikolbal Pattan in north Kashmir said due to insufficient rainfall and hot weather conditions the paddy crop was 25 per cent less than what they harvested last year.
But he added it was satisfactory for the entire hamlet of about 1,000 homes.
He said while most villagers are harvesting the crop themselves, some are hiring non local labourers.
Nisar added they are cultivating and harvesting the crop for their own purposes, not for sale.
He said village Trikolbal is famous for harvesting the paddy crop first in all of Kashmir Valley due to its soil and environment conditions.
He said all villagers in Trikolbal are associated and dependent on the paddy crop to feed their families. However many have to purchase the rice from the open market for a few months.
He said the quality of paddy in Trikolbal is one of the best among the Kashmir crop which is famous in taste and produces a good smell during cooking. “It is a pure white thick rice locally known K-39,” he added.
He said there is a great demand for this kind of rice from other parts and some farmers are selling it in the market also.
When asked what villagers do in the rest of the months of the year, Nisar said that there is no orchard field in Trikolbal so people choose labor work to earn their livelihood.
He said most children in the village are studying in government schools and many villagers are in government jobs.
Nisar alleged that the government is taking less interest in the development of the village where roads are dilapidated.
He said that a bridge on the main road connecting KP Payeen and Trikolbal is under construction for the past 14 years yet to be completed, causing great difficulties for the villagers of both the areas.