Organic Prasad at Char Dham Temples, a New Way to Sustain Rural Economy
Giving another reason for revering the holy land of Uttarakhand, TS Rawat, Chief Minister of Uttarakhand brought forward organic prasad as the new initiative on the Char Dham route and other shrines. The organic prasad which is prepared by the local food grains like Chauli and other ingredients is just a way to bring it to the market and to sustain rural economy. Talking of which, a small counter of organic prasad was set up close to the Badrinath Dham temple last season which brought in great results and gave the authorities hope for future success. Women self-help groups were the ones behind the preparation of the organic prasad that was offered at the stall near Badrinath shrine. With the rigorous efforts, the women self-help groups were not only able to earn a revenue of Rs 19 lakh but also a good profit of Rs 9 lakh.
Along with the Char Dham circuit, the organic prasad will be made available at 625 temples that are roofed under the state. The prasad comprising of ingredients like kuttu or madva and chauli will be cooked in ghee and sprinkled with dry fruits and to be sold in baskets made up of Ringal Bamboo, another craft practiced in Uttarakhand. The focus of the scheme is to give out employment opportunities to the rural people and to uplift the economy. An NGO named Himalayan Environment Studies and Conservation Organisation (HESCO) will also take active part in the initiative by providing technical support and wants the Government to support as well. To spread the word about the organic prasad, Government has asked the curators of the prasad – the self-help groups to give a nice label to it.
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