Mina Rao from Nandapur village, Koraput district of Odisha, owned two nondescript cows which were able to yield only 3 to 4 litres of milk per day. After availing of the crossbreeding service of the cattle development centre at Hikimput, his fortunes changed. His milk yield improved to 8-9 litres from the new progeny. So happy was Rao with the results, that he got his animals inseminated 10 times from the centre under the Kalyani integrated livestock development programme and today, he is the proud owner of three female calves and two male calves. He now obtains a milk yield of 16-17 litres which is sold to the sweet shop at Similiguda fetching him Rs. 12,000 per month. Earlier, he had sold a female cow for Rs. 22,000 to his friend to meet urgent medical expenses. Rao is a contended man today.
The main occupation of Baldeogarh in Tikamgarh district of Madhya Pradesh, a semi-arid region with red sandy soil and deprived of ground water, is agriculture and its allied activities. With rain-fed agriculture and low yielding livestock, people in this area are very poor. Thus, integrated watershed management programme was introduced in collaboration with Hindustan Unilever Vitality Foundation in 15 villages. A small dam was built. One of the farmers Pragilal says, “30 farmers are benefitted by the dam and have started irrigating their farms using diesel engine. The dam has helped in irrigating 50 ha”. He also added “every drop of water is important”. Now, he is able to take up two crops. Subsequent to the project, the second crop of wheat was also cultivated with 3 – 8 tons, yielding a net income of Rs. 28,500. After the launching of the watershed development programme by BAIF in 15 villages of Baldeogarh, the farmers decided to construct a dam-cum-bridge. Now, the vegetable growers of Janakpur and Khajrar are especially happy, as visiting Hirapur market every week to sell their produce, has become easy.
When the Governor of Maharashtra, Dr. P.C. Alexander visited the tribal development programme at Jawhar in Palghar district of Maharashtra, on October 24, 2001, his attention was drawn to a tribal woman Tulshi Rama Kinar, standing in the front row. It was revealed that as her husband was an alcoholic, she could not enroll in the programme. However, she managed to convince the BAIF Field team. After a few days, the blisters caused by digging the pits, came to the notice of her husband who changed his mind. This was three years prior to the visit of the Governor. Today, 20 years after joining the programme, the family is earning an annual income of Rs. 35,000 to Rs. 40,000 from mango, cashew and guava trees and Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 20,000 from sale of vegetables. Earlier, she was also selling 4 litres of buffalo milk every day and earning about Rs. 35000 to Rs.40000 annually. While one of her sons is employed with the Thane Municipal authorities, the other is employed with a private firm at Jawhar. Wadi has enabled her to arrange a good match for her only daughter.