An Irular Tribal Woman brackishwater aquafarmer Smt. M. Usha, nominated by ICAR- CIBA, Chennai received the award “IARI Innovative Farmers Award- 2016. Shri. Radha Mohan Singh, Hon’ble Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare presented the award the presence of Dr. Sanjeev Kumar Balyan, Hon’ble Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, in the Krishi Unnati Mela -2016. The mela was earlier inaugurated by Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and was held during 19-21 March 2016 at New Delhi.
Smt. M. Usha is from Kulathumedu village, Pazhaverkadu (Pulicat), Ponneri, Tiruvallur district, Tamil Nadu. Her family is primarily engaged in fishing related activities. Smt.Usha has been initiated and trained on alternative livelihood using modern brackishwater aquaculture technologies such as mud crab farming, seabass nursery rearing in hapas and polyculture farming of crab and seabass by ICAR –CIBA. The tide-fed brackishwater community ponds in the village were used for earning additional income during lean fishing season, using technologies and technical support provided by the Scientist of ICAR- CIBA. This linkage was made possible by funded projects of Department of Biotechnology & ICAR-Tribal Sub Plan at CIBA.