Name : T. Vengadapathy Reddiar
District & State : Puduchcheri, Puduchcheri
Category : Utility
Award : National
Award Function : 9th National Grassroots Innovation Awards
Award Year : 2017
Educated up to only class fourth, Vengadapathy Reddiar (70), an agriculturist, has developed various new varieties of Casuarina spp. and Crossandra spp. by cross breeding, optimized gamma radiation treatment and subsequent mass selection method. Improved varieties of Casuarina spp. MIQ and Modi – 1 have been accepted by many farmers for cropping as they have fast and uniform growth habits, whereas Crossandra spp. having many varieties such as Modi-1-3 and Kalam-1-3 which have unique pattern and colour.
Given his inquisitive nature, Vengadapathi Reddiar gathered a lot of knowledge in agriculture and floriculture though he is a school dropout. He explains that flowers have a lot of role to play in a person’s life from birth till death hence he has dedicated his life for the cultivation of flowers and their improvement. He owns a nursery (agriculture) and tissue culture laboratory. He lives with his wife and a daughter who helps him in managing the accounts. He has ten acres of land where he plants Casuarina and so far he has developed 14 varieties of Casuarina by cross breeding, gamma irradiation induction and mass selection and about 100 varieties of Crossandra of different colors by mutation and pollen crossing methods. He is also working on other crops such as neem, amaranthus, lemon and chili.