Scribbles from a reporter's Note PAD
[LIVE Blogging via Twitter by M Shekhar]


An idea can change everything

Not many years ago. But, once upon a time, there was a company in Finland, however, unknown to the rest of the world then. Now it’s a success story. It’s made history. Its single effort changed the economy of the country, enrolling the nation to the elite club.Guess the name? Nooo, ok skip this. This is none other than, NOKIA. Yes-Connecting people. It was the year 1982. When NOKIA applied for manufacturing mobile phones, the authorities observed it just as kidding. But they prove wrong. The personnel at company were confident on their vision and adamant on their stand. Now the world is witness.One can see a similar effort in Shekhawati belt of Rajsthan. Farming has become the most pleasant venture in this area. Simple fields have been converted into lovely farm houses, attracting foreign tourists. Age old Havelis are now guest houses offering modern comfort and Royal treatment to the visitors. And the credit for all goes to the seasoned efforts of Morarka Foundation (MF), an NGO active in the area. The MF founded the base of Shekhawati Festival in Navalgarh, the city of Havelis, about one and a half decade back. Apart from promoting Rural tourism MF encourages farmers for Organic Farming.Here the fields have been developed as Corporate Farms. Foreigners, mostly French, can be seen not only interested in visiting farms, but they prefer breakfast, lunch snacks and even dinner here. One can get a hot cup of tea, made from fresh cow milk, for Rs. 50 only. The villagers offers at home for tourists. During this period, on an average, Rs. 500 charged per tourist for a day. The guests are served Baati-Daal-Churma and other traditional dishes to satiate their hunger. The MF ensures proper sanitation and maintenance of hygiene. This effort has hiked the income of the farmers in Shekhawati belt. At least, 30 such farms are serving the visiting guests in the area.About seven hours The havelis of Shekhawati are most sought after attraction for tourists here. Mostly exhibit paintings on wall including some golden painting. “14 years back, there were only 42 rooms to stay for tourists, now the number has reached upto 800, says Kamal Morarka, founder of MF. The huge haveli Roop Nivas Palace has been transformed into a grand guest house spreading in greenery with peacocks and lots of birds playing around. Though the Common Wealth Games are going to be organized in Delhi, but preparations are on in Shekhawati right now. Padharo mhaare desh... spinning the sound in the surroundings.

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