The Minister’s Mansion – Kanthalloor – Part 2 – Activities

This is a 2 part series that is continued from Minister’s Mansion, Kanthalloor-An Overview

Kanthalloor and its surroundings are a part of the Shola evergreen forest ranges and the rugged terrain provides scenic beauty in the form of waterfalls, mountain views, eucalyptus forests and the wildlife that they hold within.

In addition, the vast range of organic and exotic fruits, vegetables and flowers grown there, make for a very exciting time for lovers of such produce.

 

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The Minister’s Mansion – Kanthalloor – Part 1 – An Overview

(A 2 part series on the Minister’s Mansion, Kanthalloor, Kerala which includes the overview and the sightseeing)

Is a Plum assignment defined as a great job to have or a project where Plums hang within reach of your nose ?

The latter is exactly what my latest adventure is about. And not just plums but several exotic fruits within my heart’s reach !!!

Now what would come to mind when one hears the words apple, peach, plum, pear, deodar and ‘Chinnar’ ? Kashmir … or Shimla perhaps ? Would you consider Kerala as a possibility ??? Highly unlikely right ?

Well, while Chinnar is the name of the adjoining wildlife sanctuary (and merely sounds like the Chinar tree), the rest of the trees indeed flourish in this little hill station called Kanthalloor, my latest discovery, that is actually known as the Shimla of Kerala. And when I say known, I mean by the very few people who are aware of its existence.

My stay was at the utterly charming Minister’s Mansion in the little village and this 2 part narration will take you through an overview of this holiday home as well as the sight seeing attractions in the surrounding forests and mountains.

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Akshayakalpa – Part 3- Organic vegetable garden

(A 3 part narrative that includes the Concept and Dairy Farms in Part 1, the Main Dairy plant in part 2  and the Vegetable garden in Part 3)

Organic vegetable cultivation – 

At Akshayakalpa, a half acre patch in the premises is used for growing their own organic vegetables which are used in the canteen for the staff meals, used for generating seeds and compost and are also sold in the market.

The original soil has been excavated and then refilled with soil from an organic source.

The garden is under the extremely green thumb of the demure Rathnamma, who manages all the gardening work.

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Akshayakalpa – Part 2 – Main Dairy Plant

(A 3 part narrative that includes the Concept and Dairy Farms in Part 1, the main Dairy plant in part 2  and the Vegetable garden in Part 3)

My visit to the plant – 

The next morning I was taken to the Akshayakalpa plant in Kodihalli, Hassan district. The 25 acre space houses the reception area, the canteen, the administrative office, the main processing plant, the real plants 😀 (a patch of vegetable garden), the store for supplies and the RnD Heifer unit.

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Akshayakalpa – Part 1- Concept and Dairy Farms

(A 3 part narrative that includes the Concept and Dairy Farms in Part 1, the Main Dairy plant in part 2 and the Vegetable garden in Part 3)
Akshayakalpa – Rejuvenating Indian Agriculture

Come with me to a land of Infinite Dreams and I will show you how they are being transformed to reality by a team that has cracked the winning code.

Reality that is being crafted, not temporarily but into a state of prosperity that loops in an unfaltering cycle of success, with that magic word called Sustainability.

Akshayakalpa meaning Infinite possibilities or as I would like to call it, Imagination without borders, is the dream that was conceived and implemented by Dr GNS Reddy in 2010. Dr Reddy was the vice president of the Pune based NGO, Bharathiya Agro Industries Foundation (BAIF). BAIF was founded by Dr. Manibhai Desai with an aim to promote rural development in India. Dr Desai was a Gandhian and hence when Dr Reddy decided to branch off on his own, he chose to create Akshayakalpa on Gandhi Jayanthi, ie Oct 2nd, which is now celebrated as their Founder’s Day.

Akshayakalpa Farms and Foods Ltd., is basically a rural enterprise which aims at making farmers self reliant by setting up organic dairies in village farms and then helping them through the entire process from milking to marketing. Rejuvenating Indian Agriculture, is what their noble motto declares !!!

Dr Reddy was joined in this venture by Shashi Kumar who was working in Wipro for 20 years and who along with 8 of his colleagues, decided to quit their corporate jobs and work together and even locally designed and manufactured the equipment that is being used in the milking and testing system, under the brand Stellapps.

By the end of 2016, Shashi Kumar took over as CEO and a streamlining of the processes, led to a catapulting of the company into a whole new state of structured systems and greater success and prosperity.

They are now a team of veterinarians, engineers, management professionals and extension officers, all ably guiding the farmers and ensuring for them a life of dignity, comfort and prosperity.

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