Wednesday, 6 December, 2023

COVID lockdown makes an offer: Hotelier youth translates childhood aspiration into action, becomes buffalo farmer


By Thakur Prasad Acharya, Myagdi, Nov. 20: When he was a child, Dinesh Rawal, a resident of Ratnechaur, Beni Municipality-1, had a great interest in animal husbandry but, as he grew, circumstances forced him into restaurant business.

The nationwide lockdown enforced since March to July to curb spread of COVID-19 in Nepal offered an opportunity for Rawal to materiliase his childhood dream into action. His hotel that he and his brother had been running for five years at Eklephant in Tanahu district along Prithvi Highway got closed and Rawal returned to his home village.

And the Rawal brothers started buffalo farming.

"I had an aspiration to do animal husbandry, buffalo farming, when I was a child. Due to different situations, I became hotelier. The lockdown imposed to stem COVID-19 spread came up with an offer for me to follow my dream," said Rawal.

The Rawal brothers have taken four ropani of land on rent for buffalo farming at Bhuwane in Ratechaur.

They have established Rawal Animal Husbandry and Agriculture Firm with an investment of 18 lakh rupees. There are seven milk giving buffaloes and two cows which also give milk, and they produce about 80 liters of milk daily.

Rawal brothers earn over two lakh rupees a month by milk sale.

Ramesh, the elder Rawal brother, said they had a plan to expand the firm and add more milk giving cows and buffaloes.

"When lockdown started in March, we came to village with a view to return to the hotel after some days. Our staff in the hotel also came with us. But, while staying here, as lockdown was extended, we changed our mind. We started buffalo husbandry," said Ramesh.

He said that their milk production is sold at Beni and Baglung market. "I had never touched a buffalo. But, work has taught me and now I do all the work related to buffalo husbandry."

Ramesh said they built buffalo shed by watching videos posted on social media network such as Youtube and they also did the same to buy buffalo.

Five people including two hotel staff and family members of the Rawal brothers are employed in the farm.

"We have problem of electricity and drinking water here," Ramesh said when asked about problems related to animal husbandry at their village.