The people of Rajasthan have been battling with nature for a long time. The Thar Desert especially is a very dry and parts are semi arid. Oases which are a common sight in all deserts aren’t there in Thar Desert. There are however many man made lakes, which are the work of the Maharajas who wanted their subjects to have a better life. Crops Grown
Wheat, barley and many other millets and grains are grown and these form a staple diet for common folk. Cotton and Tobacco are cash crops of Rajasthan. Other vegetable grown here include potato, Tomato and local specialties like Sangri, Gwarphali and Kakri (Bean family). Fruits include Tangerine, Oranges and Watermelon. Pulses are also grown here and are also consumed. White Revolution
The state is one of the largest producers of milk.
The White revolution has become big here and now the state provides milk and other dairy products to neighboring states also.
In the villages, it’s the young children and women who tend to the fodder and grazing for the goats and buffaloes, while the men traditionally work the farms. The farm holdings are very small and are traditionally worked by the men only. Mechanized farming is not popular here.
The farms are worked by hand as they have been done for thousands of years. Camels and even buffaloes are used for ploughing the land. The irrigation of the land is dependent on the man made tanks and lakes. The water is located during the rains. Sometimes the droughts happen for many consecutive years and this can be very back breaking for the farmers.
The Indira Gandhi Irrigation Canal
The Indira Gandhi Irrigation Canal has been a success and is helping farmers across the state to reap rich dividends. A variety of citrus fruits are now been grown. Many fresh vegetables are also been grown.
The Indira Gandhi irrigation Canal has transformed barren lands around Jaisalmer district and other areas into lush green areas.
Mustard crop and wheat are now grown in these areas where there was nothing, but the bareness of the undulating sands. Even roses are now been cultivated in this arid land. The canal also supplies drinking water to many small hamlets and villages across its way.
The Canal starts from the confluence of Beas and Sutlej river, runs through Punjab and Haryana and finally to Rajasthan. Construction started way back in 1965 and it was then known simply as the Rajasthan Canal (name was changed in 1984).
The White and the Green Revolution has improved the standard of living for many.