Chennai, Sep 25 () : Realtors lead to a reverse migration of farmers from cities to villages in Tamil Nadu.
Till recently, farmers in Tamil Nadu were selling land and moving towards Chennai or tier 2 cities to get jobs. Now the farmers with one to two acres of land on the outskirts are selling land and moving towards interior areas to purchase 5 or more acres of land instead of heading to city.
Areas where farmers hold land outside the areas of what is now known as Greater Chennai kick started this trend. Real estate developers looking for land to build villas and townships for selling for as much Rs 30 lakhs for those from the IT sector coaxed these farmers to sell. The farmers realized that already these housing colonies and gated townships were sucking up the ground water leaving nothing much for agriculture and hence decided to move interiors.
Real estate developers offered fancy prices to get the lands and farmers moved to other districts like Kancheepuram and Thanjavur to buy fertile land with good irrigation facilities. They know that soon these real estate sharks will come as soon as an IT park or industry crops up.
Though one would think that these farmers are a gullible lot, real estate realtors have been left holding land with rocks underneath and no water underground. They saw fertile land with water gushing from a hose but it all turned out to be a mirage.
The reason for the migration to villages instead of cities is that connectivity through road transport and to railway stations has increased in the State.
Those in border areas of Kerala-Karnataka-Andhra Pradesh are selling lands and moving over to these States where prices are cheaper. Kerala’s planters are buying up land in Kanyakumari and Tirunelveli districts while those who sold them are moving across the border to Andhra Pradesh.
Andhra farmers in south of the State are moving towards north or towards Orissa. These migratory farmers will have the last laugh whether FDI in retail pushes up their income or not.