Lunavada, 26 May 2020
Aboriginal people living in Kadana and Santrampur taluka in the forest area of Mahisagar district of Gujarat move away from their hometown to work in different parts of Gujarat. Aboriginal workers have lost their jobs due to the coronavirus lockdown. 50 lakh tribals have migrated from home in Gujarat. Many of them are now finding employment by collecting leaves from trees in the forests used to make bidis for smoking habits.
In tribal areas of hilly and dense forests, nature has brought joy to tribal families in difficult conditions. But most of the people are wandering unemployed.
The tribal people live by selling rainfed agriculture and secondary forest products. Timaru leaf (bidi Patta) season is in full swing in the forests of Gujarat’s tribal aria Mahisagar district. There are a large number of tribal families who collect the leaves of Timaru and make a living.
In the Corona crisis, Timaru Paan has proved to be a blessing in business.
Waking up early in the morning, going to the forest, climbing a tree, picking timaru leaves, collecting them, bringing them home, arranging another leaf on one leaf all day and making 50 leaves of jute. Made Judi goes to sell the allotted fruits to the scribe in the evening. Cash pays.
Last year, 100 bundles of Timaru leaves were priced at around Rs. 90. The price has increased by Rs 20 this year. The bridges are priced at Rs. 110 this year.
A person makes 200 to 250 bundles a day. They are getting employment for 200 to 300 rupees. If there is a large family, then the daily income of the family earns about Rs. 2,000. The income of timaru paan is spent on bringing seeds and fertilizers for cultivation.
There is a wedding season in tribal areas during summer. So that the wedding expenses also go away. There is no occasion for marriage as there is currently lockout.
Timaru leaves are used in the home industry of making BD. Good quality timaru leaves are in demand all over the country. Purchased by Forest Development Corporation.
Timaru leaves dry on the ground. Once a copper-like color is found, it is packaged and demanded.
Adivasis live in 140 villages of 66 gram panchayats in tribal areas of Mahisagar district. They are generating Rs 3.50 crore in lockdown through Timaru Pan business.