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Copyright: People of Neil Island and Indian Institute of Science



B.C.P.P




NIEL ISLAND


TEAM ;-

Shri B. Suresh Kumar, Field Investigator

Field Investigator.

Shri K. Biju,



STUDY AREA ;- Study area comprises of three villages of Neil Island i.e. Bharatpur, Ram Nagar and Sitapur. Neil Island is one of the islands of the Ritchies Archipelago. The island is small and about 46 km. away from Port Blair, which is in the tehsil Head Quarter. The total area of the island is 1,850 hectare.

PLACE : NEIL ISLAND List of Chapters

  1. Village Profile.

  2. Landscape Elements.




  1. Anthropogenic History.

  2. People(user groups) Knowledgeable Individuals.

  3. Socio - Culture.

  4. Education and Economic Status.

  5. Natural Ecosystems.

  6. Biological Resources.

  7. Ecological History.

  8. Development Aspiration.

  9. Awareness, Consensus and Conflicts of users of resources.

  10. Conservation Prioritisation.

  11. Strategies.

  12. Management Options.

  13. Action Plan.

  14. Public and Administration Participation.

TEAM ;-

Shri B. Suresh Kumar, Field Investigator

Shri K. Biju, Field Investigator.

STUDY AREA ;- Study area comprises of three villages of Neil Island i.e. Bharatpur, Ram Nagar and Sitapur. Neil Island is one of the islands of the Ritchies Archipelago. The island is small and about 46 km. away from Port Blair, which is in the tehsil Head Quarter. The total area of the island is 1,850 hectare.

1. VILLAGE PROFILE

AREA:- The study area comprises of three villages Bharatpur, Ram Nagar, Sitapur. The description of each village is given below :-

a) Bharatpur ;- This village is about 3 kms away from the Neil kendra, the main market
area and is under Neil Panchayat. It has 35 families and comes under Port Blair Tehsil. There
is one Primary school and one Aganwadi for small children. The Primary health centre is

3 Km. away and there is also one Sub Health Centre at neighbouring Sitapur village which is


about 3 Kms. away. There is one metal road connecting Neil Kendra and the neighbouring
villages. The Police station is situated at Neil Kendra. Postal facilities are available only at
Neil Kendra. Electricity is available in this village. Only wells are available for drinking
water. The water is very rich in calcium. There is one Video Hall for entertainment.
The area of the village is

b) Ram Nagar;- Ram Nagar is adjacent to Bharatpur and is 3 Km. away from Neil Kendra
and also comes under the Neil Kendra Panchayat. A Total of 48 families are staying here.
One metal road is passing through this village. Electricity is available in this village. Only
wells are available for drinking water and rich in calcium. Education facilities, health facilities,
postal facilities etc. are not available in this village but at Neil Kendra. However there are two
Aganwadis. There is one Video Hall for entertainment. The area of the village is

c) Sitaour ;- The village is also adjacent to Ram Nagar and about 5 Km. away from Neil
Kendra. This is also comes under the Neil Kendra Panchayat. A total of 26 families are
staying here. One metal road is passing through this village. Electricity is also available in this
village. Only wells are available for drinking water. The water is very rich in calcium. There
is one Sub Health Centre, Anganwadi and Middle school in the village. This village is
bordering the sea and there is a good sea beach . The area of the village is

2. Landscape Element

The landscape elements of the study area consists of Paddy field, Forest patches, Sea beach, Sea and Lake.



3. Anthropogenic History

Settlement in Neil Island was taken up under Rehabilitation Departments colonisation scheme from the year 1966. The refugees from erstwhile East Pakistan were settled in four villages. In the study area only three villages are included. A few settlers were allotted land during 1968 in all such villages. People from Bangladesh started settling in the study area from 1976 onwards. These families first came to West Bengal and subsequently migrated to Neil Island. There is only one family from Bihar who came here and encroached land during 1986. This encroachment is on Government revenue land.



4. People (User groups). Knowledgeable Individuals

There are 116 families including 41 encroachers residing in the three villages of the study area. There main occupation is cultivation and hence comes under only one major user group namely the cultivator. However, some of the family members of these families also engage in activities like fishing, shop keeping, collection of fuel wood as subsidiary activities. The list of knowledgeable Individuals are furnished as under :-


1. Name of the individual:

Sex and age:

Religion:

No. of years of experience



Field of experience :

2. Name of the individual:

Sex and age:

Religion :

No. of years of experience



Field of experience :

3. Name of the individual:

Sex and age :

Religion :

No. of years of experience



Field of experience :

Chinta Biswas.

Male, 32yrs.

Hindu.

30 years.



Vegetable cultivation.

Janto Biswas.

Male, 48yrs.

Hindu.

28 years.



Paddy cultivation.

Satish Mallick.

Male, 65yrs.

Hindu.

30 years.



Field crops and plantation.

4. Name of the individual :

Sex and age : Religion : No. of years of experience : Field of experience :



Bimal Kumar Roy.

Male, 37yrs. Hindu. 28 years. Paddy cultivation.



5. Name of the individual :

Sex and age : Religion : No. of years of experience : Field of experience :



Dushrat Burma.

Male, 30yrs. Hindu. 6 years. Medicinal plant.



5. Socio-Culture

Culturally they are not very enriched. No caste system is practised and there is no enmity between people of different sections. Most of the settlers belong to the lower caste of Hindus.



The main activity of user group :- There is only one user group i.e. cultivator. The main activity of the user group are cultivation of

  1. Paddy.

  2. Vegetable.

  3. Pulses.

  4. Oil seeds.

  5. Plantation crops.

There is only one user group and calendar of annual activity of this user group is furnished below :-

SI. No.

1.

Bengali month

Chaitra-Vaishakh

English month

March - early May

Activities

1. Agricultural activity:-

a) Harvesting of vegetables from field where


residual moisture is available.

b) Harvesting of pulses, oil seeds and


drying.

  1. Harvesting of fruit crops like mango,
    papaya, banana etc.

  2. Harvesting of coconut, arecanut etc.

  3. Land preparation for paddy.

  4. Drying of seeds of vegetable crops.

  1. Labour works :- (i) Collection of firewood,
    ii) Repair of houses and construction of new
    houses.

  2. Fishing:- Fishing for home consumption.

2.

Jaystha-Ashadh

Shrawan-Bhadra

Ashwin-Kartik

Agrahan-Poush

Magh-Phalgun

May - early July

July-Mid September

September - Mid Novemeber

November - Mid January



January - Mid March


  1. Agricultural activity :- (i) Raising of paddy
    nurseries, (ii) Broadcasting of paddy seeds,
    (iii) Intercultural operations in paddy,
    vegetables etc. iv) Cultivation of kharif
    vegetables. v) Harvesting of coconut,
    banana and arecanut. vi) Land preparation and
    digging of pits too permanent crops.

  2. Fishing :- Fishing for home consumption.




  1. Agricultural activity :- (i) Harvesting and
    processing of short duration paddy.
    II) Transplanting of medium varieties of paddy.
    iii) Cultivation of kharif vegetables on higher
    areas, iv) Cultivation of permanent crops like
    coconut, arecanut. v) Harvesting of coconut,
    arecanut and banana.

  2. Fishing:- Fishing for home consumption.

1. Agricultural activity :- (i) Harvesting,
threshing and drying of paddy, (ii) Land
preparation and sowing of rabi vegetables, iii)
Harvesting of vegetables, iv) Harvesting of
lemons, v) Sowing of pulses and oil seeds,
vi) Harvesting of coconut, arecanut, banana.

2. Fishing .- Fishing for home consumption.

  1. Agricultural activity :- (i) Harvesting and
    processing of paddy, (ii) Cultivation of rabi
    vegetables, (iii) Intercultural operation in
    vegetables, pulses and oil seeds, (iv) Irrigation
    in vegetables, (v) Harvesting of fruits like
    Pomegranate, (vi) Harvesting of coconut,
    arecanut.

  2. Fishing :- Fishing for home consumption.

Cultural and other aspects :-

i) Structure of houses :- Most of the houses are made of jungle materials. Some of the houses have corrugated tins as roofing material. Most of the houses have four rooms including a drawing room. The rooms are mostly in one line having the Verandah in the front. A small hut is constructed for kitchen a little away from the main house. They also have one hut without wall which is situated away from the house and used for sheltering domestic animals. A small toilet is constructed away from the main house which has a small deep tank. The toilet has walls all around. All the houses have shallow, katcha wells, water from which is used both for domestic purpose and irrigation through pump set.

ii) Food habits :- All the family in the study area are Bengalees. They take both vegetarian and non-vegetarian diet. They generally raise poultry birds and few raise ducks for eggs and flesh. The food habit of one family who came from Bihar is also the same. Rice is the main food of the villagers.

Hi) Dress code ;- Males wear dhoti, kurta, shirt, pant, lungi etc. Females wear, salwar kamiz, saree and blouse.

iv) Religious festivities ;- All the families except the one from Bihar are Hindu. They celebrate Durga puja, Kali puja and worship other Gods and Goddesses of the Hindu religion. The Christian family observe festivals like Easter, X-Mas, New year etc. Majority of the Bengalis have got their family deity at their respective house.

v) Cultural activities ;- The most important cultural activity is the Vivekananda mela held from 18th of January each year for a week, wherein they perform drama, dances and sing songs. Such cultural activity are also carried out during Durga puja.

vi) Traditional expertise :- Traditional expertise of the people here include agriculture, horticulture, livestock-keeping, making of traditional Bengalee sweets and use of medicinal plants.

6. Education and Economic Strata

In this area most of the people are just literate. Most young boys and girls have not completed secondary level of education. About 80% of the young people have studied in schools, mostly upto the 8th standard.

The majority of the peoples are cultivators and they cultivate vegetables, as well. The economic condition of the majority of settlers are good. The average income per family varies between Rs. 25,000 to 30,000 per annum. Fishing is done only as a non-commercial activity i.e. for their own consumption.

7. Natural Ecosystem (LSEs)

A) Paddy field :- There are seven patches of paddy which has been designated as p1,
p
2, p6 ,P7. Patch no. p3 has been taken as standard paddy patch (Standard LSE).

It has been noticed that in comparison to p3 all the other Paddy patches are inferior in standard.



Causes of deterioration :- Most of the paddy fields are undulating and no-proper soil conservation measures were practised. Moreover, the top layer of the soil is very shallow. The fertility of the soil has reduced greatly. The fanners do not apply any organic manures. They also do not pay much attention towards paddy cultivation. They cultivate mostly short duration varieties of Paddy during the period from July-August and September-October. Then they devote their entire time on vegetable cultivation. Therefore, the cause of deterioration may be taken as -

  1. Shallow top soil.

  2. Absence of proper soil conservation measure which causes soil erosion.

B) Forest Patches :- There are five forest patches in the study area numbered as f1, F2 F3,

f5. The forest patch F2 was taken as standard patch. In comparison to F2 all the other forest patches are highly degraded.

Causes of degradation :- 1) Injudicious felling of forest trees for timber, fuelwood etc. 2) No attempts were made to regenerate the forest.

C) Sea Beach :- There is only one Sea Beach in Sitapur. The Sea Beach is also deteriorating
in the absence of protection by mangrove forest. However their are no collection of sand or™
corals from the sea beach now.

D) Sea :- The settlers of the study area do not over exploit the sea for any type of marine
resources. They only do fishing for their own use. But outsiders are exploiting the marine
resources, especially sharks for fins. They use net which also catches other small and young
fishes. Therefore, proper breeding of different sea fishes is hampered. Thus fishing of Shark
is the only cause of degradation of the sea around the study area. The fishermen who catches
Sharks for fins throw the other parts of the shark and the dead fishes into the sea which
pollutes the sea water.

8. Biological Resources

Cultivated Plants

(a) Cereals :-

S.No.

Local Name

Scientific Name

Family

Locality

Status

Part Used

Life form

Purpose

(i)

Rice

Oryza sativa

Graminaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Grain

Grassy

Human Consumption

(b) Pulses:-

s.no.

Local Name

Scientific Name

Family

Locality

Status

Part Used

Life form

Purpose

(i)

Moong Dal

Phaseolui aureus

Leguminosae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Grain

Shrub

Human Consumption

(ii)

Urad Dal

Phaseolus mungo

Leguminosae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Grain

Shrub

Human Consumption

(c) Oil Seeds:-

S.No.

Local Name

Scientific Name

Family

Locality

Status

Part Used

Life form

Purpose

(i)

Ground nut

Arachis hypogaea

Fabaceae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Fruit

Shrub

Human Consumption

(d) Vegetables :-

s.no.

Local Name

Scientific Name

Family

Locality

Status

Part Used

Life form

Purpose

(i)

Snake gourd

Trichosanthes anguine

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(ii)

Cucumber

Cucunis sativus

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(iii)

Bitter gourd

Momordice charantia

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(iv)

Bottle gourd

Lagenaria gummifera

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(v)

Pumpkin

Cucurbita maxima

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(vi)

Ridge gourd

Luffa acutangula

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(vii)

Kundru

Coccinia grandis

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(viii)

Brinjal

Solanwn melongena

Solaneceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Shrub

Human Consumption

(ix)

Ladies finger

Abelmoschus esculentus

Malvaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Shrub

Human Consumption

(x)

Tomato

Lycopersicon esculentum

Solanaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Shrub

Human Consumption

(Xi)

Lobia

Vigna sinensis

Leguminosae

Paddy fellow

Common

Fruit

Trailer

Human Consumption

(Hi)

Radish

Raphanus sativus

Craciferae

Paddy fellow

Common

Root

Root crops

Human Consumption

(xiii)

Palak baagi

Beta vulgaris

Chenopodiaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Leaf & stem

Shrub

Human Consumption

(xiv)

Marsa baagi

Amaranthus gangeticus

Chenopodiaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Leaf & stem

Shrub

Human Consumption

(XV)

Poi baagi

Basella alba

Basellaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Leaf & stem

Shrub

Human Consumption

(xvi)

Kata baagi

Hibiscus sabdarica

Malvaceae


Paddy fellow

Common

Leaf & stem

Shrub

Human Consumption

(xvii)

Drumstick

Moringa oleifera

Moijingaceae


Sloopy land


Common

Leaf & fruit

Tree

Human Consumption

(xviii)

Sweet potato

Ipomoea batatas

'Convolvulaceae

Paddy fellow

Occasional


Root

Root crops

Human Consumption

(xix)

Sponge gourd

Luffa cylindrica

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow


Occasional

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(XX)

Ash gourd

Benincasa cerifera

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(xxi)

Tarbooja

Citrullus vulgaris

Cucurbitaceae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(xii)

Sem

Dolichas lablab

Leguminosae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Fruit

Climber

Human Consumption

(xxiii)


Spinach

Amaranthus species

Chenopodiaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Leaf & stem

Shrub

Human Consumption

(xxiv)

Yam

Diosccaxa species

Dioscoreaceae

Paddy fellow

Common

Root

Root crops

Human Consumption

(XXV)

Tapioca

Manihot Esculenta

Euphorbiaceae

Paddy fellow

Occasional

Root

Root crops

Human Consumption
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