Singiri Jeevankumar Reddy brings a ray of hope to the farmers of his village Byrampuram. Reddy has just been granted a scholarship at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel to join M.Sc program in Desert Studies, specializing in Agriculture and Bio-technology for sustainable dryland development.
An alumnus of Research Applied Innovation Technology University, Bangalore, Reddy pursued BSc Agriculture for a reason. His aim is to research and come up with solutions for his community of farmers back home who have struggled with years of drought in this region.
His village falls under Anantapur district in Andhra Pradesh. And this district is also the region that receives the second lowest rainfall in the country.
“Growing up, I saw farmers struggling for livelihood in this desert area. Many farmers from our village also left their home for good to be able to put food on their plates,” narrates Reddy.
His father grows groundnuts and pigeon peas on their family land. These are the two best options for this drought ridden area.
His humble background gives him a rare skill – empathy. He says that when he left his village to pursue higher studies, he was determined to do something for the people he was leaving behind. His study on ‘sustainable dryland development’ will help bring hopes not only to the farmers of his village, but to the entire district.
Professors at Research Applied Innovation Technology University, Bangalore vouch for Reddy’s inclination. They say he worked on as many as five different projects at any given time, starting from his classroom projects to being in the lab to test various methods of modern farming taught by professors.
For young Reddy, enabling himself with the right kind of knowledge to help his village is the best thing he can do right now. Reddy feels that since he has closely lived and watched the region for years, he will be perfectly able to match his knowledge with ground realities to come up with solutions that is of real help to the farmers.
As Reddy prepares to leave for Ben-Gurion University on 14 October 2019, he assures his parents that soon he will be back with solutions for sustainable farming.
With 75% of Anantapur’s population in rural areas and 80% of all workers engaged in agriculture (either as farmers or labourers), youngsters like Reddy promise to bring hope.