p style=”text-align:justify;”>It happened during a trip to my native. Would not discuss more about the place or people as that’s not the focus here. After a comfortable train journey, the next patch was to be covered by road, I chose to take an auto rickshaw. Upon a hard bargaining, got hold of a decent looking guy who agreed to my T&C!
There was something special about this guy who was dressed smartly and had some sophistication while speaking. With the intention of digging into his life, I initiated a conversation by asking if he owns the auto. He replied in affirmation and said he got it through an auto loan. Poor fellow I thought, makes a living from the meagre earnings. Then I checked about his qualifications as he was using ample number of English words in his conversations. He was a graduate in political science! Respect! Not for his degree but for the courage to be an autowallah inspite of being decently educated.
As the interaction was getting into flow, I tried poking my nose into his personal life. He responded without hesitation. Eldest of three siblings, he was from a modest background. Family earned it’s living from a small piece of land. After completing graduation, he tried for jobs, experimented with business but failed miserably in both. So he decided to join his father back home and concentrate on farming. I was thinking of asking him “Oh! You failed there too?”, but stopped myself from doing that as that would sound rude.
He had been into farming for quite some time now and was still continuing. I asked if farming is a good enough profession while we hear about farmer suicides from every part of the country. He said no doubt the going has got very tough for farmers, but when there is a strong will there is a way. There is a scarcity of innovation in this sector which can be attributed to the lacklustre focus of the policy-makers and also the urban oriented people from village. He had studied details about modern farming in countries like New Zealand, USA and Switzerland etc to understand the nuances of the trade. I was getting amazed with the ease and fulency with which he was explaining things to me. Apart from two harvests of paddy and one of pulses, the smart fellow had ventured into vegetables and aquaculture. Proud owner of about 30 acres of agricultural land, my auto-rickshaw driver, a content farmer, has a farm house which uses solar power for its appliances.
The interaction with our learned farmer was quite a memory and very pleasing to know that with a different thought towards agriculture, it can be achieved what this fellow has done. If we look into developed nations which are good at agriculture, they have given it industry status. Science and Technology is gone into the methods of farming. People in farming are well aware about the skills required for modern farming. Moreover as it is considered as a business, there is diversification in the trade. Probably if our policymakers can look into these factors, our farmers also can prosper like their global peers.