Submitted by RUAF South and ... on Fri, 11/19/2010 - 11:34
Date of RUAF intervention: 2005-2008
Hyderabad | Multi stakeholder action planning | Urban agriculture on the city agenda | Surabhi Colony | Key results and Lessons learned | Follow up activities | Products | Contact
URBAN AGRICULTURE IN HYDERABAD
Major agricultural activities within the city of Hyderabad are fodder and vegetable production, urban forestry and dairy/milk production. Sorghum, maize, horsegram, ground nut and vegetables are also grown to a limited extent in the peri-urban fringes of the city.
Water for irrigation of crops and other livelihood activities is taken primarily from the Musi River, which flows through the city and has become a perennial water source due to wastewater generated from the city. In 2005 about 2108 ha. of para grass in and around Hyderabad and 10,000 ha of paddy along the “Musi River Corridor” are irrigated with waste water.
Agriculture in and around Serilingampalli is dominated by paddy and small-scale vegetable production, such as brinjal (eggplant), tomato and leafy vegetables. However, high land values and rapid urbanisation have resulted in the reduction of agricultural land, which has hit the low-income communities the hardest (nearly 80 per cent of the municipality’s vegetable supply is now brought from other neighbouring peri-urban areas). RUAF-CFF assisted the Serilingampalli Municipality to explore the potentials of and constraints for urban agriculture and at the moment is collaborating with a low-income community (Surabhi Colony) to develop household kitchen gardens and a school garden at a residential school for poor girls.
Serilingampalli is one of the 12 Municipalities conforming the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation and one of the fastest-growing zones of Hyderabad and high levels of poverty. Hyderabad is the capital city of the state of Andhra Pradesh in India. It has an estimated population of seven million making it India’s fifth-largest metropolitan area. It is known for its rich history, architecture, food and multilingual culture, and considered to be the modern hub of information technology and biotechnology. With the recent addition of twelve municipalities (in 2007), the city is now estimated to cover an area of 650 km2.
With an annual precipitation of 790 mm, and temperatures ranging from 13 - 28°C on average, the peripheral areas of the city are studded with agricultural landscapes. Rice, fodder and vegetables are the predominant crops. However, soaring land prices have led to a rapid conversion of agricultural plots and wastelands into commercial real estate sites. While the city offers modern amenities and a global lifestyle to its citizens, GHMC and the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) are also committed to creating a “Greener Hyderabad”, and for this purpose are promoting a number of campaigns for a healthy environment.
Around 13.48 per cent of the population (540,000) lives below poverty line. Hyderabad is characterised by a very significant presence of urban poor with a growing urban poverty profile. Slum settlements have multiplied in recent decades and living conditions have not improved (the 2001 census counted 1631 slums). The number of people inhabiting slums is estimated to be around two million. The incidence of poverty is higher among women than men, and female-headed households constitute the poorest of the poor. The main source of income for the poor is daily wage labour in infrastructure companies and informal sectors like small industries.
MULTI STAKEHOLDER ACTION PLANNING
The RUAF Cities Farming for the Future programme (RUAF-CFF) facilitates participatory and multi-stakeholder policy formulation and action planning (MPAP) on urban agriculture in Serilingampalli.
In 2005, the Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad (MCH) now Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC), supported by RUAF CFF, created a multi-stakeholder team that undertook a study on the scale and scope of urban agriculture in Hyderabad to explore its potentials and constraints and enable policy development and action planning on urban agriculture. In 2006 Serilingampalli was selected as the pilot municipality to explore the potential of develop pilot activities on urban agriculture. Supported by the Serilingampalli Circle-1 Municipality, the members of the Surabhi Colony (mainly women) were identified as the direct stakeholders for the pilot activities. Other stakeholders are the Andhra Pradesh Social Welfare Residential Girls High School and Junior College, and institutions such as EPTRI, Roda Mistry College of Social Work, Acharya NG Ranga Agriculture University (ANGRAU), APUSP, and more recently GHMC’s Urban Poverty Alleviation and Livelihood cell.
|Participatory and multi-stakeholder policy formulation and action planning (MPAP) is a process of collaboration between urban authorities, citizens, farmers, civil organisations, private sector companies and other governmental entities in the preparation, implementation and evaluation of policies and related action plans. This approach brings together major stakeholders in the form of communication, dialogue, co-determination of issues, joint decision making, planning and implementation of projects. The main output of a MPAP process is the joint development of a City Strategic Agenda on urban agriculture.|
URBAN AGRICULTURE ON THE CITY AGENDA
Asking attention of policy makers for urban agriculture is a challenge in Hyderabad, which is a rapidly developing IT and biotech city. In addition to being involved in the exploratory study and the pilot project greening process in Serilingampalli, authorities from GHMC have conducted exposure visits to countries like the Philippines and received city stakeholders from neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka with support of RUAF-CFF. These activities have opened a window for the exchange of ideas at policy making level, especially between stakeholders of Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation. GMHC has expressed interest in exploring avenues to include urban agriculture as a part of its city greening programme. GHMC is also keen to pilot test the allotment garden concept in some of the open spaces close to community dwellings and to develop a city strategic agenda on urban agriculture. This agenda will include close links with self-help groups and the state of Andhra Pradesh.
In Serilingampalli, RUAF-CFF collaborates with members of Surabhi Colony in the development of urban agriculture on available open spaces. The community members, most of whom are women, have developed kitchen gardens next to their homes using low-space methods including vertical and aerial cultivation. They also have engaged in composting of kitchen waste and collection of water from the roof area for use in the dry season when water is insufficient for irrigation. Implements, seeds, vermicompost, neem-oil and cake, sprayers, rainwater harvesting structures and compost bins were provided to the colony members as part of the pilot project. An average yield of 3.8 kg of vegetables per household/month was harvested in the initial phase, with an average monthly saving per household of around Rs. 84 ($2) per month, in addition to an increase in the varieties of vegetables consumed.
At the Andhra Pradesh Social Welfare Residential Girls High School and Junior College located at Gowlidoddi Village in Serilingampalli Municipality over 1000 m2 of land was cultivated to supplement the students’ daily vegetable and fruit requirements and also to expose the children to the importance of a balanced diet that includes vegetables and fruits. All documents regarding this work can be found at
KEY RESULTS AND LESSONS LEARNED
- GMHC has expressed interest in exploring avenues to include urban agriculture as a part of its city greening programme “Greener Hyderabad” that was launched in 2008, with activities like tree planting, development of parks and gardens with the support of the welfare associations, private institutions, and schools. GMHC is keen to pilot test the allotment garden concept in some of the open spaces close to low income communities. Other suggested agricultural activities linked to this concept of urban greening are: home gardens using low-space options, school and institutional gardens, and “edible landscaping”
- GMHC also expressed interest to develop a city strategic agenda on urban agriculture. This agenda will include close links with self-help groups and the state of Andhra Pradesh.
- Urban agriculture in the form of kitchen gardens is emerging as an alternative means of improving household food security and savings. Household food security is possible, if proper guidance and technical support is made available. The most significant changes experienced by the participating households are improved access to a greater variety of fresh vegetables and the acquisition of new skills. One of the major constraints that the city dwellers face is the lack of space. Vertical structures can increase the surface area on which to grow vegetables. Poor soils and insufficient water resources necessitate the use of novel technologies and methods to use household greywater.
- In spite of keen interest, city dwellers are sometimes reluctant to engage in urban agriculture due to their lack of information and training on the subject.
- A concerted effort to increase knowledge, skills and awareness from institutions such as the Departments of Agriculture and Horticulture along with the municipal administration is required to support urban farming.
- A clear policy framework that supports urban agriculture is needed for the productive
development of open spaces. Growing perishable vegetables on these vacant spaces will in turn reduce food miles, keep the prices of vegetables low and enhance
FOLLOW UP ACTIVITIES
The National Institute of Agricultural Extension Management (MANAGE) organised a National Consultation on Urban Agriculture in Rajendranagar, Hyderabad on 28-30 July, 2010.
The objectives of this meeting were:
- To deliberate on the concept of urban and peri-urban agriculture in the Indian context
- To examine the need for promoting urban agriculture and its relevance in the present context of development
- To deliberate on the modalities of promoting urban agriculture along with the institutional arrangements
- To deliberate on the policy options and programme interventions needed for promoting urban agriculture
Participants included senior level delegates from different sectoral departments, state governments, Government of India, Municipal corporations, Farmers, Private industry, reputed NGOs working in the field from all over India.
Recommendations following from the workshop included the need:
- For a common understanding of UA; organise regional workshops/consultations to create awareness and come to an understanding of what UA is in order to be able to promote it. 4-5 of such workshops will be organised (Kerala-Trivandrum, Karnataka-Bangalore, Maharashtra-Pune, North India-Chandigarh, and North Eastern India-Calcutta).
- To support/strengthen this concept, the Planning Commission should issue some sort of guideline or indication that states should pay more attention to UA
- To collect and document experiences
- To increase the thrust of UA in the next five-year plan which will be formulated in 2011
- To create a website on UA and a quarterly e-newsletter to disseminate information
- To create a center for UA; initially at MANAGE and then regional centers could be started. These centers can implement and coordinate activities and provide support to further develop UA throughout India
- To involve and expand the number of stakeholders; stakeholders are important to provide the link to the agricultural community, provide technical guidance and other resources, both in rural and urban areas
- For research on UA
- For capacity building on UA
- To provide a one-stop shop for UA (Seeds, Fertilizers, Cockpit, Tools, Pots and etc., )
For further information please contact: Dr. G R Desai, Director MANAGE at firstname.lastname@example.org or Dr. P L Manohari, Research Associate MANAGE at email@example.com
- Policy Narrative - Potentials for urban and peri-urban agriculture in Serilingampally Circle, Hyderabad
- Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC), Hyderabad; Website: www.ghmc.gov.in.
- Serilingampalli Circle 1 municipal authority, Hyderabad.
- Environment Protection Training and Research Institute (EPTRI), Hyderabad;
- Vegetable Department, Acharya N G Ranga Agriculture University, Rajendranagar, Hyderabad;
- Centre for Spatial Information Technology (CSIT), JNTU, Hyderabad;
- Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board, Hyderabad;
- Department of Horticulture, Hyderabad;
- Social Welfare Department, Hyderabad;
- International Water Management Institute (IWMI).
Regional Coordination of the RUAF Cities Farming for the Future Programme
International Water Management Institute (IWMI-India), Hyderabad, India
c/o ICRISAT, Patancheru, Hyderabad - 502 324,
Andhra Pradesh, India
P +91-40-3071 3745
F +91-40-3071 3074, 3071 3075
Regional coordinator: Dr. Priyanie Amerasinghe
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