ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Farmers, Floods and the Pandemic

Kuttanad and Covid-19

Aided by the Government of Kerala, the farmers in Kuttanad are continuing to show resistance through cooperation and resilience.


Kuttanad region spanning across districts of Alappuzha, Kottayam and Pathanamthitta is considered the rice bowl of Kerala. It is one among the Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) identified by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO).1 Agriculture here is practised in low-lying fields (1–3 metres below sea level) ­reclaimed by dewatering the rivers, marshes and Vembanad lake (backwater) beds through human intervention. The word kuttanad means low-lying lands (MSSRF 2007: 62). The reclamation activities intensified in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Four major ­rivers of Kerala—Meenachil, Pamba, Manimalayar, Achankovil—drain into the Vembanad (KSPB 2019: 16). The Vembanad lake alternately, is also affected by seawater intrusion from the Arabian sea. The inflow of seawater and outflow of river waters are regulated by Thanneermukkam barrage and Thottapally spillway respectively (MSSRF 2007: 73).


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Updated On : 24th Dec, 2020


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