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Ex MGNREGS Chief Coordinator Taking Vetiver to Sundarbans in West Bengal, Creating Awareness About Divine Grass

Why has this Ex MGNREGS Chief Coordinator, Syed Samsun Nabi, started his own start-up to help farmers learn about vetiver grass, and calling state's pilot project a complete waste of money. Take a look.

Aysha Anam
Syed Samsun Nabi with farmers in Sundarbans, West Bengal. (Photo Courtesy: Syed Samsun Nabi)
Syed Samsun Nabi with farmers in Sundarbans, West Bengal. (Photo Courtesy: Syed Samsun Nabi)

Syed Samsun Nabi, the coordinator for the India Vetiver Network, hosted Vetiver Grass Awareness program in Sagar Block, Sundarbans, West Bengal on June 5, World Environment Day. More than 300 farmers have learnt about vetiver grass during this event.

The aim of the event is to disseminate accurate knowledge about the vetiver grass. During the programme he said that he has “mobilized the poor section of the society to understand the merits of the grass.”

Located 110 km away from Kolkata, Sundarbans acts like a protective barrier against floods and frequent cyclones in the area. The water rushes from all corners of this piece of land, making a huge mud loss daily.

Vetiver in Sundarbans of West Bengal

Although it comes under a UNESCO World Heritage Site, government has not actively worked to restore the thick mangrove forests from climatic wrath. In fact, the state government initiated a pilot implementation of vetiver throughout West Bengal, but failed at it due to – “Variety selection, least technical supervision, no maintenance, leading to a total waste of money in the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005, MNREGA,” said Nabi, who was the then Chief Coordinator in MGNREGS.

His plan of action now at the region is to distribute 2 lakh or 0.2 million slip for free of cost. Moreover, “the plants needs to be uprooted and transported to this region and distributed to the regional farmers,” he said.

Working on Green Technology, Nabi has helped in sourcing vetiver from Women Technology Park Sarar Island in West Bengal for demonstrations at the Environment Fair.

How Will Farmers be Benefitted?

A TVNI coordinator and Founder Sphere Edge Enterprise - a startup for Environmental Engineering, Nabi, said, “Our request to bring this into effect since vetiver slips have to be transported from nurseries developed by the poor section of the society they were planted and replanted tested by the soil sciences department of the Civil Engineering department of NIT Durgapur and not very far from the premises.”

He has brought this grass from the southern part of the country to help farmers in the Sundarbans region to learn more about it. 

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