Nagpur: With drinking water being scarce, irrigation is a far cry at Borwa a tribal village 60 kms from Akola city. The only source for villagers, who mainly depend on jowar (sorghum) cultivation, is the rainwater flowing down from the hills around. Even the hill stream slowed down due to a dry spell three years ago.
A change in the matrix introduced by a 29-year-old college dropout saved the parched village from a crisis. Nasri Chavan suggested that the crops be grown in rows instead of columns. Earlier, when the lines were straight, water from hills could not be retained in the fields. With horizontal plantations the water stayed and the dry spell could be managed.
All farms in the village are right at the foothills. Outlets were dug to let water flow from one field to another. Chavan bagged the state government’s Krushi Bhushan award for innovative farming. The prize was handed by Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis over last week.