Mangoes of Tipu Sultan and the rice of Natabar Sarangi

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The mangoes of Tipu Sultan and the rice of Natabar Sarangi

Tipu Sultan, also known as the Tiger of Mysore, ruled the South Indian Kingdom of Mysore for almost 50 years from 1751 to 1799. Tipu Sultan is remembered for many things, but a 20 acre plot in the tiny village of Kirugavulu in the Mandya district of Karnataka is not one of those things. A farmer named Syed Ghani Khan has been managing this piece of land gifted to his forefathers of the 1700s by Tipu Sultan for actively working in his army. Today, this small piece of land is home to over 116 varieties of Mango and over 150 varieties of rice![1][2]

The village of Kirugavulu stationed Tipu Sultan's regiment in the 1700s. When the regiment was disbanded, Tipu Sultan gifted the land to members serving in his army. The district of Mandya lies in the Southern and the most species rich part of Karnataka. Thus, till very recently, this area had a lot of vegetation. However, in 1924, the Krishna Raja Sagara dam was built on the river Kaveri for irrigation purposes[3]. This allowed people to engage in farming - trees were chopped down and paddy - a water-demanding crop and a staple diet in South India - started to get cultivated[2]. Most of Kirugavulu shifted to paddy cultivation, except Ghani's ancestors. Due to the insistence of Ghani's grandmother, several trees survived the changing times. Many mango trees that grow on Ghani's farm today are over 200 years old[2]. Ghani's activities were encouraged by local NGOs and soon his farm became a model for organic farming. Today, there are mangoes that look like grapefruit or taste like sweet lemon, mangoes that look like apples or mangoes that shrink without rotting and many more such varieties growing on Ghani's farm.

Another farmer - Natabar Sarangi - has been collecting rice varieties for a long time now. He has managed to save and reintroduce over 350 varieties of rice back in India. Know more about his vision and mission in the video alongside[4].


  1. ^ Gift from Tipu Sultan now a biodiversity hotspot The Hindu Published: December 3, 2010, Accessed: Oct 25, 2011
  2. ^ a b c Mangoes lost 150 years ago Down to Earth Published: April 15, 2011, Accessed: Oct 25, 2011
  3. ^ The Brindavan Gardens and Krishnaraja Sagar Dam Published: Sep 26, 2011, Accessed:Oct 25, 2011
  4. ^ The Seed Al Jazeera English Published: Jan 23, 2011, Accessed: Oct 25, 2011


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Semantic tags

Title Mangoes of Tipu Sultan and the rice of Natabar Sarangi Article is on this general topic Indigenous practices Author Gaurav Moghe
Specific location(s) where study was conducted Not noted General region where study was conducted Not noted State where study was conducted Karnataka
Institutional affiliation Not noted Institution located at Not noted Institution based around Not noted
Species Group Plants User ID User:Gauravm Page creation date 2011/10/26

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