Reasi is a hilly district of Jammu and Kashmir which is located around 72 km away from Jammu and is at 1528 meter above mean sea level. Its population is 3, 14,714 as per 2011 census. Most of the farmers of Reasi district are small and marginal and crops are mostly cultivated under rain fed (about 94%) conditions.
Shafanoo village is about 40 km away from world famous religious place Katra in Reasi district of Jammu and Kashmir. The village is around 10 km. away from Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Reasi and farmers of this village seek technical guidelines from KVK scientists. This village is situated in the remote area of Reasi district and is lacking the road and communication connectivity.
There are around 350 families in the village. The major occupation of the people is agriculture and the village known for the commercial cultivation of bamboo.
There are about 250 progressive bamboo growers in the village who are producing the bamboo at a commercial level. They have made furnaces in the village where the bamboos are moulded according to their use. The bamboos of this village are very strong and are used for the building purpose, baskets, stairs, nets, for flags etc.
The farmers’ sale their produce in local market, Jammu and even in Kashmir province at the rate of Rs.100-120/ bamboo. The farmers of this village are fetching more money by selling their bamboos.
The technical guidelines on scientific bamboo cultivation are provided by the KVK, Reasi. With the generation of extra income, the farmers developed confidence to mitigate their basic problems. A self- reliance and entrepreneurial spirit has been developed among the farmers. Shafanoo farmers’ success in commercial bamboo cultivation is inspiring the other farmers of the area and they are also shifting towards the commercial bamboo for better economic returns.
According to a local farmer, Payar Hussain our village is known for bamboo production and quality bamboo is being produced by our village farmers. The village farmers want some bamboo processing units in the village so that income and employment can be generated in the village. They showed interest on the trainings on bamboo processing.
According to the Naib Sarpanch of the village, Ratan Lal, “we face problems to sale our bamboo produce but if some industries on bamboos processing are made in the village then whole scenario of the village can be changed. More income and employment can be generated for the villagers.”
There is need to conserve the bamboo forests etc. Bamboo growers of this area should get the institutional support at regional and state level.