Bamboo stripes collected by the consumers left under the sun. Photo: Yogesh Rawal/Republica
TIKAPUR, March 21: Satti Karnali community forest at Tikapur Municipality has become a lucrative source of income for the locals in the area. The locals had been earning income through fodder, log among others but now bamboo has become one of the major income source.
The community forest has been coordinating with the locals while cutting the bamboo trees. The locals get Rs 9 for cutting a kilogram of bamboo. For this year's bamboo cutting program that started from Saturday, about 300 locals are involved.
The community forest has set the target of cutting around 400,000 kilograms of bamboo this year. The bamboo trees are being cut from the largest plot this year. There are four plots inside the community forest, and one plot is selected each year.
Dhansingh Saud, chairman of the community forest said that, the committee has plans of chopping the most bamboo trees this year. He informed that last year, a total of 350,000 kilograms of bamboo trees were cut. “This year, more bamboo trees will be cut as the plot is huge,” he said.
It takes one month to cut the bamboo trees. Iman Singh Pun of Tikapur Municipality-7 said that, an individual can cut 50 kilograms of bamboo trees a day. He has cut 300 kilograms of bamboo trees and has earned Rs 2,700 so far.
Similarly, Mansara Dhungana of the same municipality has cut 27 kilograms of bamboo in a day. She has been engaged in this activity from day one. She said that the earning contributes to her household expenses.
The community forest keeps the record of the workers about their workload. Maniram Dhungana, treasurer of the committee said that, the payment is made only after the work is completed. “We keep daily record and make payments accordingly,” he said, “If paid once after the completion of the work, they can use the sum for something useful.”
The main market for the bamboo is India. Different organizations have been providing training to produce products made up of the bamboo to the locals. After being trained, some people have been producing products like sofa, table, chairs, flower vase, and bamboo stools. The committee has also provided similar training to 30 people. Of which, eight have been producing products out of bamboo. The committee finds the market for the products and the earning is split between the producers and the committee.
Of the total 258.63 hectares of forest area, bamboo is cultivated in 145 hectares. There are 1,123 members of the community forest.