MUMBAI: Hinduja Foundation, a part of the 100-year-old Hinduja Group has adopted 13 new villages under the Model Village Project, in India to develop rural areas. The 13 villages are from the State of Maharashtra which has seen the highest distress on account of drought and heat wave.
These developmental projects will be executed between 2017 to 2022. The 13 new villages adopted in Maharshtra, Palghar District include – Akre, Sakod, Deogaon, Aalyachimet, Barwadpada, Jagda, Dajese, Pimparna, Khambale, Talasari, Kirmire, Sakharshet, and Umbarkheda.
“With the ongoing distress among farmers in India, particularly in Maharashtra which was affected by the worst drought, Hinduja Foundation as a part of its Model Village Project has adopted 13 new villages in India to develop rural areas in the country. It will focus on enhancing livelihood opportunities, develop sanitation & clean water drinking facility, promote the use of alternate energy like solar power, improving health & hygiene facilities, build educational facilities, undertake training programmes for women empowerment and infrastructural development in the village,’’ said Brig. Chukerbuti, Executive Vice President of the Hinduja Foundation.
The Foundation under the Rural Development Project (Gramin Vikas Prakalp) in 2015 had adopted five villages and based on its success and experience, they have decided to adopt more villages. Under the existing programme the Foundation has adopted Pimpalshet, Ojhar, Kharonda, Tilondhe and Chambharshet for the period June 2015 – 2027.
Also, a total of five schools viz. Kranti Jyoti Madhyamik Ashram School, Chanjarshet, Sarkari Ashram School, Ojhar, Jilha Parishad schools from Pimpalshet, Chambharshet and one school from Khundachapada have been adopted.
Key developmental activity conducted by Hinduja Foundation, under the model village project in Jawhar, Pimpalshet, Ojhar, Tilonde and Chambharshet in Maharashtra.
Initiatives for Renewable Energy
Solar based water lifting project
The foundation has set up a potable water project powered by solar power to ensure drinking water is made available to locals.
Hinduja’s water lifting project was powered by solar power where water is lifted from the nearby river and stored in tanks built on hills, making water available for locals/ villagers. They also built a solar drinking water project for domestic use like cooking, drinking, etc. This project has impacted nearly 104 families. Recently, with an aim to save water and provide it to the villagers of Jawhar, students from Hinduja College took an initiative to construct check dams and soak pits in the taluka. The Foundation has constructed a water tank at Shingarpada, and construction for water tanks is ongoing in Kharonda Gavthan, Hedicha Pada and Ojhar Gavthan.
Tree based farming programme
Wadi is typically 1 acre plot of fruit plants surrounded by one or two rows of forestry plantation and inter-cultivation with crops, between the rows of horticulture plants. Wadi can provide sustainable income to the farmers from sale of fruits and timber. Cropping undertaken as inter-cultivation ensures food security of the family. Wadis are generally planted on wasteland. Establishment of Wadi on such lands helps it to turn it into productive land due to addition of bio-mass and development of water resources. Wadi, thus is a great tool for wasteland development. Hinduja foundation till date has planted 90,000 trees on waste lands with 95% survival rate, bringing such lands under cultivation.
Deepening of the open wells is being undertaken by the Project to tap live underground sources of water and to increase storage capacity of the well. To help farmers in their vegetable cultivation and floriculture activities, Hinduja foundation has dug 9 wells in Jawahar taluka.
The vegetable cultivation programme was conducted to help farmers get additional income. Also this programme added advantage in improving the nutritional status of the families through home level consumption. The Potential of Vegetable Cultivation as an income generation activity was recognized by Hinduja Foundation. Cultivation of vegetables such as Bitter gourd in Kharif & Chilli, onion, Cowpea, Cluster bean, Gram Cucumber & watermelon in Rabi was promoted.