Red chillies, road & water – the three just connect my recent experience on a rural visit.
On 9th April, I found myself on the road from Hyderabad to Kavurivari Palem (KV Palem for easy reference) – an obscure village in the hinterlands of Andhra Pradesh. This photoblog is to capture and share my 2 day experience before the memory gets overwhelmed with the cacophony of work and life in Mumbai.
Red chillies – the sight that first greets you. Mostly exported, this variety of chillies called Guntur chillies, this is the primary agricultural produce here along with cotton, chana dal and tobacco.
Women of different households team together to form DWCRA groups (Development of Women & Children in Rural Areas – a government scheme) that undertake the preliminary processing of tobacco before its picked up by agents of tobacco companies.
Road connectivity, is primarily what the village folk need so that their children can get good schooling. Families have shifted base to other villages or town with better education prospects. In this case, it resulted in the local primary school getting closed last year.
Water woes – families fetch 20litre water bottles from a filtration plant in the neighbouring village for consumption. The agricultural fields need a much larger input and therefore farmers have to be content with low yields and lessers crops each year.
So what did I return with – a feeling of being connected to a village & its people, a preliminary understanding of their needs that we’ll try to work for, and a small bag of red chillies – freshly dried.
If you want to explore an India that you do not understand yet, and a bit more about yourself in the process, then volunteering provides you several such journeys. And you do return with a lot more than just helping the underprivileged.