top of page

Rise with Rice

Radhika Agarwal’s photo essay captures the students of SCMSophia as they learn rice transplanting in paddy fields in Kamshet.

"Be gentle with nature, it will support you," says Mr. Dinesh Balsaver, the owner of the rice farm, where we had gone in August when the rains were coming down, filling the fields and making them ready to transplant rice.
“You are dealing with two living things,” Mr. Balsaver continued. “The rice sapling and the earth.”
And so we descended into the field with Jumbarbai, an old hand at rice growing. This farm has been organic for more than forty years and so we were stepping into clean soil or so we kept telling ourselves as we squelched our way through the mud.
We had so many fears: that we might fall over into the mud, that we might hurt the rice seedlings, that we would be horrible at the task at hand, and that we would end up with aches or bites or scratches.
But then the soil forgave and the magic took over and our first tentative steps became more confident as we began to plant our first rice.
There was pizza for lunch afterwards and we lay about Mr. Balsaver's home and enjoyed the company of dogs.

Photograph by Naysha Bhatia

About to rise along with the rice through this year.

Photograph by Aboli Maharwade

Photograph by Radhika Agarwal

Jumbarbai leads the way and welcomes us into the field.

Photograph by Aboli Maharwade

Eagerly and anxiously waiting for our turn.

Photograph by Aboli Maharwade

Photograph by Laaya Lobo

Nature welcomes us with open arms and we do the same.

IMG-20230129-WA0013.jpg

Photograph by Aboli Maharwade

Trying to wash off the mud, getting dirtier and more bruised than before

Photograph by Laaya Lobo

Photograph by Laaya Lobo