‘Voice of the farmers’ Nammalvar no more

Death of Nammalvar at 75 turns out as a black day for environmentalists and farmers.

Chennai: Monday was a black day for scores of environmentalists and farmers.

The death of ‘Iyarkai Vignyani’ Nammalvar at 75 came as a shocker as 2013 drew to a close. Famous for his battle against pesticide farming and MNC seed firms, Nammalvar was a sought-after voice at national and international conferences on agriculture.

Even on his last day, he participated in a protest at Pattukottai against the coalbed methane exploration project planned in the delta districts.

While several scientists conducted trials on pesticides and hybrid seeds, Nammalvar quit as an agricultural scientist within three years of taking up the cushy government job and started his voluntary work in organic farming.

He partnered with experts like P.R.Dominic Pyre as agronomist. His ‘Van­a­gam’,­ a voluntary organization, had inspired several IT professionals and young people from various sectors to take up agriculture.

His last talk at a public meet goes like this: ‘we are proud that India, as a developing nation, exports all consumer goods ranging from cars to T-shirts. But we have to think why the importing coun­tries­ couldn’t produce these goods on their own. These importers want to keep their water sources clean and buy these products from us. They protect their environment clean and green and we exploit the same to made products for them’.

Nammalvar had stressed many times that we have to get back to agriculture from agri-business.

“You dream of bumper profits in agri-business; but in agriculture, you attain good and healthy life for your family, your society and the country.

Agriculture is sustainable whereas agri-business is not,” he had said.

( Source : dc )
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