Fellow Since 1994
Academy of Development Science
This profile was prepared when Rajeev Khedkar was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1994.
The New Idea
Rajeev Khedkar is promoting the preservation and cultivation of India's indigenous plant species as a more sustainable and appropriate system of agricultural and ecological management. Through the reintroduction of a variety of indigenous rice species, he is demonstrating their effectiveness as a crop. By creating a string of interconnected local gene banks, he is providing for the widespread use of his strategy, while ensuring its sustainability by gaining grassroots support through public education and placing control of these resources within the community. In addition, he is creating a network of trained individuals to help farmers and agricultural organizations utilize and maintain the "living" gene banks across the widest possible area.