25 varieties of rice on display

A three-day 'Red Rice Mela' organised by Sahaja Samrudha, a Bangalore-based organic farmers' association, began yesterday at Nanjaraja Bahadur Choultry on Vinoba Road here.

About 25 varieties of red rice are exhibited in the Mela along with food items prepared from them. Boregowda, an enterprising organic farmer from Mandya and his wife, inaugurated the rice mela.

G.S. Jayadev of Deenadayal Trust, Raitha Sangha Gen. Secretary Badagalapura Nagendra, paddy farmer Syed Ghanikhan, NABARD Mysore Chief Aruvamudan and others were present.

Speaking on the occasion, Jayadeva suggested people to switch over to healthy red rice which had medicinal properties.

Nagendra opined that red rice consumes less water. He urged the government to distribute red rice in ration shops also. In Punjab, paddy is grown using a lot of harmful chemicals. Hence, red rice which is grown locally, should be consumed for better health, he suggested.

He opined that red rice would provide a solution for Cauvery crisis as it is easier to grow as it does not need more water and chemicals like hybrids.