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No Cooking, Only Soaking: 'Magic Rice' from Assam Hills Might Be a Hit in Telangana

Boka saul rice was used in 12th Century by the kings of Ahom dynasty who ruled Assam and northeastern states of India. (Credit: News18)

Boka saul rice was used in 12th Century by the kings of Ahom dynasty who ruled Assam and northeastern states of India. (Credit: News18)

Srikanth started cultivating the rice in a small piece of land (0.05 acre) on his farm and he is expecting about five bags of yield.

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PV Ramana Kumar

A farmer from Karimnagar district in Telangana has been cultivating a one of a kind 'magic' rice that only needs to be soaked in hot water, there's no need for actually going through the process of cooking it.

Srikanth, who hails from Sriramula Pally in Illanthakunta Mandal has always wanted to do something unique for agriculture and that inspired him to travel and seek out different and unique breed of crops. His search took him to Assam, where he visited Gauhati University to seek their assistance in choosing variety breed of paddy.

With the help of the university's agriculture department, Srikanth chanced upon the indigenous rice boka saul, or ‘mud rice’. The rice is is a paddy variety grown in parts of lower Assam and the hills such as Nalbari, Barpeta, Goalpara, Kamrup, Darrang, Dhubri, Chirang, Bongaiagoan.

Speaking of his endeavour, Srikanth told News18, "I worked for almost one and half year to find something as special as this. I want to popularise and develop the breed and make it more available for our next generations."

Srikanth started cultivating the rice in a small piece of land (0.05 acre) on his farm and he is expecting about five bags of yield.

"It yield is almost the same as normal Paddy crop. Crop period is 145 days. It is about to cut now. I don't want to see it from a financial angle. Just wanted to develop it. I will use the yield as a seed to produce more." Srikanth said.

"I cut it in the early stage and tested. It took about half an hour to soak completely. If we use cold water, the rice will be cool and hot if we use hot water. I tried it with jaggery, banana and curd. It tastes very good. It looks like Poha after soaking." He added.

According to the study of Gauhati University on 'Bokasaul', it contains 10.73 percent fibre and 6.8 percent protein.

This rice was used in 12th Century by the kings of Ahom dynasty who ruled Assam and northeastern states of India. The rice has also received a GI tag from the Government of India’ Intellectual Property India (IPI) body in 2018, Indian Express reported.

Srikanth is cultivating 120 rare varieties of breeds in the organic farming method.


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