Soil erosionl



Rainwater harvesting and utilization

Climatic Vulnerability

East Sikkim district is characterized by cool and humid climate. The temperature in the district ranges from 1.50 (min.) to 27.5oC (max.) The annual rainfall is about 3800 mm. However, the district suffers from drought, water scarcity and cold stress during winter. The climatic constraints observed during the last year were drought (water stress) and  hailstorms.


Rainwater harvesting and utilization

There is no source of irrigation for the rabi vegetable crops although the village receives an annual rainfall of around 2500 mm. Hence, the best way to cope with this climatic challenge is to harvest the available rainwater during heavy rainfall season and use the same water for irrigating the fields during winter season. Awareness among farmers was created by frequent meetings, trainings and exposure visits.

“Jalkund” is a low-cost rainwater harvesting structure, developed on a hilltop for accumulating run-off water. This technology of water harvesting is gaining popularity in the village. About 25 Jalkunds of size 5 x 4 x 1.5 m (capacity of 30,000 l/ Jalkund) have been constructed in the village. The farmers have started cultivating winter crops in larger area through rainwater harvesting and utilization for supplemental irrigation. 

Introduction of short duration cultivars in vegetable cultivation

The demonstration of high yielding short duration varieties of cabbage (BC-76 and Wonder Ball), cauliflower (White Excel), tomato (Romeo), broccoli (TSX-0788), garden Pea (TSX-10) were conducted. These varieties were promoted to cope with drought due to their short duration. Low cost vegetable nursery structures (8 Nos.) have been constructed benefitting about 94 families. Self help groups (8 Nos) are managing the nurseries to supply good quality planting materials. Demonstrations on vegetable nursery raising techniques were conducted to impart improved vegetable nursery technologies to the members of SHGs. This has brought 5 ha of additional area under vegetable cultivation. Farmers are now enthusiastic about cultivating winter vegetables with improved drought tolerant varieties and better water management practices.

Diversification through backyard poultry

The poultry production systems in Nandok and other nearby villages are traditional and poorly remunerative. Interventions were made with dual purpose improved birds (Vanaraja and Gramapriya), which can thrive well under poor feeding and management practices, grow faster than indigenous birds and lay more eggs, thus leading to improvement in the livelihood security of the poor. The best poultry producers (having interest, skill and locally available indigenous resources to rear birds) within Self-Help Groups of the adopted village, interested in poultry production, were identified as first line beneficiaries.


The KVK organized several training and demonstration programmes on "Backyard Poultry Rearing" for farmers and farm women. Exposure visits were also conducted to gain more practical knowledge particularly on rearing of Vanaraja and Gramapriya birds. Later, about 400 chicks each of Vanaraja and Gramapriya were supplied to 40 beneficiaries of the adopted village. The birds were also given timely vaccination as per the need. This has proved to be a successful venture among farm women and is becoming popular in the area.


As a success story of this enterprise, an example of Mrs. Pabitra Sharma is cited. With a stock of 60 birds, Mrs.Sharma earned a net profit of Rs.11,300 with a B:C ratio of 1.78. With the excellent performance of Gramapriya backyard poultry, she purchased 100 more chicks. She has also started using local hens for hatching of eggs and sells chicks to fellow farmers thus making a horizontal dissemination of the technology. The village has become a hub for backyard poultry production with improved birds. Mrs. Sharma has become a role model for the farm women and landless farmers for taking up backyard poultry as a potential practice for agri-preneurship development leading to sustainable livelihood security.


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