“Life is like a rollercoaster ride, not just for the challenges it poses but also because it seems thrilling when you watch someone else’s journey, but scares you when it’s your turn. I remember visiting Chennai as a kid to deliver rice grains to my sister who was married and settled in Tambaram. I was waiting to grow up, come here, live with her and maybe even turn rich overnight as they show in the movies.
After my schooling I didn’t study, instead, I learnt to drive. With that experience, I bought a car and worked with a travel and tourism company to make a living. I also went to Dubai as a driver and recieved wonderful pay! But I had to come back to India owing to my father’s health.
He was sick and it seemed like he was holding onto his dear life just to see me. I wasn’t married and that was taking a toll on him too. I returned and nursed him back to health. I also made sure that he got back to farming. He always used natural fertilizers and manure on the farm, something we now label as “organic farming.” But things have changed. The use of pesticides in the neighboring fields and the lack of rain have made agriculture difficult. Without a choice, we started resorting to store-bought pesticides.
This sad state will only change when people respect farmers, not just give a standing ovation when a hero speaks high of them and forget about it. They should start questioning why the price of pesticide-free food is higher, when that’s the only kind that should be made available. Farmers who practice organic farming should be given incentives not just for their well-being but for the health of everyone else too. I plan on going back to the village in a few years, while I still have the energy to till the land and live the life of my people!”
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