Women farmers in Jharkhand earning lakhs from lac

Ranchi: The Government of Jharkhand is committed to revive the rural economy and make rural women self-reliant.

At the NITI Aayog Governing Council Meet, Chief Minister Shri Hemant Soren had said that the state government wants to enhance the purchasing power of the villagers. He said that India can become a self-reliant nation only by empowerment of the rural population.

Women in rural areas are being trained for the production of lac. The government is taking measures to generate livelihood opportunities for rural women. More than 73,000 rural women have been trained under this programme. In 2020, the trained women produced around 2000 metric tonnes of Lac.

The state government plans to create a pool of livelihood programmes for the women residing in rural areas, through forest produce and traditional skill set. The government intends to set the example by helping these women become self-reliant through forest produce.

Ranjita Devi lives in Rumkut Village of Goilkera Block in Chaibasa (West Singhbhum).  She is earning her livelihood through lac production. She makes almost Rs 3 lakh per annum through lac. She says, “I belong to a remote area and we are highly dependent on forest produce. This is a traditional job of my family. We are in this activity for long and now with the training, we can apply scientific methods and improve the production capacity.” Today, Ranjita Devi is earning good profit through minimal investment in lac farming. Last year, she sowed almost 300 kg of seed that garnered her 1500 kg of yield.

The women farmers in Jharkhand are being trained scientifically for lac production under the Women Farmers Empowerment Project. Additionally, these women are also being provided with a market linkage facility. Through farmers producers groups, women farmers are engaged in community lac cultivation and selling. Through residential training and sharing of each other’s experiences, women are being motivated to adopt scientific lac cultivation practices. Like Ranjita, thousands of rural women are earning a good amount of money by adapting scientific lac cultivation practices. Special farmer groups have been formed for the production and selling of Lac. A total of 460 Collection Centres and 25 Rural Service Centres are operational across the state for procurement of the produce. These centres are fully run by women where the farmer’s produce is collected at one place and later sold in the market. The government of Jharkhand is committed to make optimum use of all the forest produce and make the rural population self-reliant by providing them with a source of livelihood.

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