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Traditional wisdom keeps native seeds alive

Published: 7th May, 2022


Restoring the link between crop diversity and climate resilience, tribal women in southern Rajasthan’s Banswara district have utilised traditional wisdom to preserve indigenous seed varieties, which are on the verge of extinction.


  • A women’s group, which has named itself “Saksham Samooh”, has taken up the preservation of seeds as a mission in the form of Beej Swaraj or seed sovereignty, helping out the tribal communities with training and guidance.
  • The Beej Swaraj philosophy, based on agricultural management with indigenous resources, would succeed in maintaining an appropriate health status for the tribal population.
  • The group is supplying seeds to the farmers regularly for cultivation of crops and vegetables.
  • The indigenous seed varieties are inherently compatible with the local farming conditions and are economically practical and environmentally more sustainable than the high-yielding varieties being used in agricultural fields.
  • Besides, these seeds are pest-resistant and require a very limited use of chemical pesticides.
  • Saksham Samooh, based in Sangela village in Banswara district’s Garhi tehsil, has utilised traditional techniques for filling the seeds in sacks, sealing them and keeping them in the granary for the next crop season.

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