Meet the “Tunnel Man of India” : Amai Mahalinga Naik and his journey of transforming a barren land

In a small village called Kepu near Mangalore, Karnataka, lives a 70 year old Amai Mahalinga Naik who has transformed his barren land into a flourishing farm. 

He resorted to traditional techniques of agriculture and single-handedly developed an organic agriculture farm with a zero energy micro irrigation system. His modern farmland now attracts more than 1000 visitors a year today and serves as an inspiration to many! 

For his efforts and use of traditional techniques, Naik has been awarded by the Government of India with the Padma Shri, India’s fourth highest civilian award, in January 2022. 

This is his story of kindness towards the community and environment! This is the inspiring story of Amai Mahalinga Naik- famously known as the “Suranga Man” or “Tunnel Man” of India. 

Born in 1945 in Karnataka, he was gifted this two acre barren piece of land by his then landlord in 1978. The land was dry and didn’t show any signs of flourishing. Naik dug horizontal tunnels into the hillocks of this land to get water supply and irrigate the land. 

Not only he helped himself in finding water but also ensured sufficient supply after he completed digging of all the tunnels. This organic farm is 40 years old now and yields sustainable rich results with various crops. 

For small farmers, Amai Mahalinga became a living legend and inspiration. His dedication and perseverance to convert something into a lively farm from “zero” shows how staying kind to his goal and himself helped him achieve this milestone. Now he’s a hero for the small farmers of his region and motivates them to use farm friendly techniques. 

Stories like Naik’s are a living example of how optimism and perseverance can help an individual in maintaining self sustaining and future friendly techniques. He is a hero for community development and rural sustainability. 

Here’s to more inspiring farmers and community developers like Amai Mahalinga Naik and their journey with environment and sustainability.

Click here to read more tales of changemakers and their dedication to make a difference!

Stay kind and spread smiles.

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