American experts visit Vetiver nurseries in Nadia
The unique project named Sabujayan by the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was inaugurated by her on November 23, 2015.
Prof Dibyendu Sarkar, Stevens Institute of Technology, New Jersey, USA and Prof. Rupali Dutta, Michigan Technology University, who worked over a decade on vetiver research regarding vetiver system, its use and intervention through vetiver for sustainable development of mankind, visited the nurseries along with P Vincent, commonly known as “vetiver man of South”.
Vincent had visited the site and the nurseries too. The experts on Tuesday visited vetiver nurseries as well as plantation sites on the river banks of Nadia and inspected the river bank stabilisation work that has been carried under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).
Under the project, Vetiver will be planted along the banks of six rivers, namely Bhagirathi, Jalangi, Ichhamati, Mathabhanga, Churni and Padma which passes through the Nadia District.
Sabujayan project has been divided into three parts, namely nursery raising, plantation in the riverbanks and handicrafts preparation from the upper parts of the vetiver plants for the livelihood of the poor SHG members attached with the plantation and nursery raising.
This wonder grass, vetiver will make the district river banks, roadside soil and pond side soil stabilised.
The roots may reach up to more than 30 feet and binds the soil particles to make the bond naturally stabilised without any material intensive engineering tools in most of the riversides. Extensive training and awareness at District level, Block level and Gram Panchayat level have been made.
Progress of the project was rigorously done through district level; Block level & GP level nodal officers who have been selected, sensitised to make the programme and its implementation successful.
Gradually, the district has received 12 lakh of vetiver slips from Tamil Nadu during December, 2015 to April, 2016 and established 76 nurseries.
Initially, 2.5 crores of saplings have been produced from those 12 lakh of slips from Tamil Nadu. So far plantation along 90 km of the riversides has been planted.
1, 50,000 person days have been generated till date. Few stretches in the riversides are showing stabilisation even within two months of grown period of vetiver. “Hope, by this financial year, we can complete restoration works in maximum parts of the riversides. Irrigation & Waterways Department also is doing their works where riverbanks are most vulnerable and continuous erosion is taking place”, said Sumit Gupta, District Magistrate, Nadia.