Techie engineers green revolution

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Bangalore, Nov 9, 2013, DHNS:  It is not every day that one gets to hear about a person who completed his Master’s in engineering from UK, worked there for a few years and came back to his hometown to become a farmer.

On Saturday, while the awards for the best farmers in the Bangalore and Mandya region were being handed out on the third day of the international Krishi Mela in the city, this passionate agriculturist stood out.

Soon after completing his postgraduate studies in Civil and Structures from the University of Glamorgan in 2008, Chetan S Reddy dabbled in other jobs in retail and construction, serving as a manager for two companies for short stints. He, however, knew that this was not going to be a permanent fixture.

“I knew that I really wanted to be my own master. I did not want to work for someone else,” said Chetan. This led him to think of the possibility of taking up his father’s profession.

“My father had a dream to see me study and achieve something. I had given a number of years to his dream. It is now time to chart my own course,” said Chetan.

It has been one year and nine months in the new profession and Chetan has not looked back. He is gradually getting to know the in and out of agriculture.

“I have been primarily growing capsicum in my 6.5 acres of land near Chokkasandra in Bangalore. While I also grow other vegetables like cucumber and tomatoes from time to time, capsicum is easier to grow. There is also more income and less labour intensive. I am satisfied with the way things are working out,” he said. While Chetan’s brother lends a helping hand on a part-time basis, he has hired 11 labourers from four villages nearby. “The labourers come from Chokkasandra, Harohalli, Kommasandra and Muthanallur six days a week and get paid Rs 140 per day,” he said.

While the going has been good, it is not without its challenges. Asked whether he has plans to diversify, Chetan said, “Right now, I am not thinking about diversifying. I have taken a loan of Rs 25 lakh and have to repay it. I will carry on this way for a while, before I think about the possibility,” said Chetan.

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