Anup Patil, a 28 year old engineer who quit his IT job to do farming in a village. Well, surely some of you may find it absurd but it’s not merely a story about job, career or a lifestyle, it’s a story about courage, inspiration and never die attitude of a young man.
Working in a IT company and earning a handsome salary seems more than satisfying to many but well for Anup it wasn’t enough so one fine day he wrote his resignation letter, quit his job and came back to his flat in Pune.
Tired of his job, Anup shared that his only motivation of working six days in a week was the weekend after it and he was trapped in it for 4 years but it did not take much of him to break out of it just courage.
Anup said, “You just need the courage to come out of the loop.”
Unemployed for three moths, Patil took its first step towards his dream and when he started visiting farmers in Gujarat, Karnataka and Maharashtra and used his time to do market research and learn more about farming only to return to his village, Nagrale, in the Sangli district in Maharashtra with his fool-proof plan to start farming.
Shared how he never wanted be an emolyee Anup said, “I never wanted to be an employee. I could see my seniors. The calculation was very clear in my mind. You can never grow as an employee as much you can as an employer.”
Now a proud employer Anup employs 10-15 workers at his 12 acre farm that grows green and coloured capsicum, sweet corn, sugarcane and marigold. Also not only his turnout for last year was Rs.20-25 lakh but he is expecting more this year.
Sharing his feelings on the same he said, “My package as an engineer was Rs 6.5 lakh. Here, I am earning double the money as well as satisfaction and inner peace.”
However. a successful journey is not that meets the end but the one that crosses all hurdles. Things were never so easy when he stared off in 2016 and he was often demoralised by people close to him that reminded him of his lavish life he had been leading in the city while working.
When asked how he felt Anup laughed it off and said, “You get demoralised if you are doing something that others want you to do. Here, I was doing what I wished to do.”
Initially he began with traditional sugarcane farming putting a good use to his market research and later applied for a subsidy for a poly house and build one in his farm where he started growing coloured capsicum for which he bought 7,000 plants out of which 1,000 were destroyed. But not losing hope he replaced those 1,000 plants. Thanks to his market strategy he made profits in the first year itself.
“I had fixed the quantity and prices with the buyers even before I started planting the capsicum. This gave me an edge over others. Moreover, I was very particular about the quality. The fixed buyers were given only the A-grade yield, and the rest were sold in the local market. This way, the buyers never bargained for the price and also became my regular customers,” he shared.
Grown confident, he stepped on to his phase 2 where he decided to grow marigold after capsicum harvestation which happens in the month of April.
But with market down and flowers being perishable items, Anup had to sell it off at lower prices and bear the losses.
Anup sharing how he felt said, “No, I did not get disheartened. This was a lesson that it was not going to be a bed of roses. There would be profits as well as losses. I became more stubborn to go ahead.”
Anup continues to experiment even today on his fields. He has now planted marigolds in four acres and is selling them at the rate of Rs 50-60 per kg. He also grows sweet corn and capsicum. Additionally, he has started fish farming, after learning about it on the internet.
He said, “There was a small section in my farm where water did not drain out. I thought to utilise this drawback and turned the space into a fish pond.”
He started with Catla and Cyprinus fish in this pond, made in 1.5 acres of his land. And his wife who has done a post-graduate is also helping him at the farm now.
Sharing what worked in his favour, he concluded, “There is something to learn from everyone, even a small farmer can teach you something useful. I think that the hunger to learn has helped me become successful. I’m not shy about asking anyone anything. Moreover, agriculture is still an unexplored field. There is a huge possibility to explore and do more. I think that if more educated people take it up as a business, it will definitely flourish more than any other industry in our country.”