Rice is the main source of nourishment for more than half of the world's population. There are different types of rice. Cultivation of rice, an easy task? Obviously, not. It requires a lot of effort. Black rice is one of the most exotic foods and it has several medicinal and nutritional values. After knowing its benefits, one could definitely place this only on the emperor’s menu. Cultivation of black rice is not new but cultivating black rice with the help of 'Vedic Science' is something different.
Agriculture as per astrology:
Rohini, Mrugashira, Uttaraashada, Uttara Bhadrapada, Uttara Palguni, Hasta, Mula -- These stars are good for plowing, sowing and transplantation of plants. Kautilya Krishnan who hails from Kasimpet village, Ganneruvaram Mandal of Karimnagar district has successfully cultivated black rice. He is pursuing his MA Yajurvedabhasyam from National Sanskrit University, Tirupati. The young farmer, after examining various methods of farming, wanted to cultivate black rice using Vedic science.
He used the seedling 'Krishna Vrihi' and followed the guidelines from Krishi Parasara and Surapala's Vrikshayurveda. The efforts of Kautilya paid off and the cultivation of black rice turned out to be a grand success. He coated the seedlings with cow milk (A2), agnihotra ash and honey. Burning the cow dung cakes in the agricultural lands keeps the insects away. Black rice farming uses very little water and is drought-resistant.
Black rice is cultivated by the people of the North-Eastern states. Researchers from Australia, Indonesia, Philippines and South Africa are working on this seedling. Kautilya says that for the cultivation of black rice in one acre of land, he invested Rs 15,000. And can you believe? He says he is going to make a profit of nearly Rs. 3 to 4 lakhs! But innovative farming also means extra cost for the end-user, i.e., the consumer. A kg of rice costs anywhere between Rs 400 and Rs 1500. Kautilya says that cultivating black rice benefits the farmer immensely. Also, he will be able to provide healthy grain to the people. Recently, Krishna Vrihi seedling has bagged the Geographical Indication tag.
Process of making seedling:
First, one kg of seedling has to be soaked in either 250 or 500 ml of cow milk for 15 days. Mix it thoroughly so that each and every seedling gets coated with cow milk. After 15 days, cow dung has to be mixed and then dry the mixture. Following this process, honey or ghee should be added. Now, the seedlings are ready for use. As per cultivation using Vedic science, before harvesting, 'Laxmi Puja' should be performed.
Benefits of Black Rice:
Black rice contains vitamin B, niacin, vitamin E, phosphorus, zinc, antioxidants, amino acids, calcium, magnesium, iron, etc. Rich in anthocyanins which not only act as antioxidants but also activate detoxifying enzymes, the black rice prevents cancer cell proliferation and have anti-inflammatory effects, inhibit the formation of new blood vessels that encourage tumor growth. Black Rice is rich in proteins when compared to brown rice. Even after three to four polishes, the black rice remains the same. Modern research claims that black rice helps fight against heart problems, breast cancer, fatty liver, obesity, and hormones related health disorders, besides others.
Lord Rama says -- "This world attains happiness and prosperity only through agriculture." So, it is the duty of 'Kaliyuga's Maharshi' (farmers) to safeguard the ancient methods for the cultivation of rice. "When the farmer becomes healthy, the nation becomes wealthy", says Kautilya.