Gurjatinder Singh Virk


Success Story Of A Farmer Who Started Fish Farming In Compulsion, But Today He Has Become An Inspiration For Others

Never thought by anyone, a land that had been lying vacant for the last 100 years, can be so productive and useful today. The reason that no one ever tried of doing anything on that land was, it remained waterlogged for 11 months in a year. But with the every coming new generation there comes a new thinking. We all know that to make a minor change in the surrounding and environment, great effort is needed, and that great effort can only come into action with strong willpower and passion. And with such a different outlook, intellect, and zeal, to do something for his motherland and for his community came Gurjatinder Singh Virk.

Gurjatinder Singh Virk residence of village Kandola, District Roopnagar, started fish farming on that 5 acres waterlogged land in the year of 1985, which came to him from ancestral property. As he was left with no other choice, so he especially visited Gurdaspur and took 5 days training before starting fish farming. He started fish farming almost 30 years ago, and since then, with his hard work and diligence, he has spread that 5 acres of land to 30 acres. His revolutionary step towards fish farming motivated many other farmers in following the same path, and ultimately it leads to manifold effect which helped in developing the whole wasteland into a fish farming area.

Today, about 300-400 acres of waste land is being used for the purpose of fish farming in the same area.

It all started years ago with a piece of land and one man’s effort, and today it has inspired many people. Eventually, that little step is helping in improving the livelihood of the farmers and many other localities by uplifting their living standard. Now, a community of passionate fishing farmers has been created in that area and their endeavours are ultimately resulting in the economic development of the area which is adding to the economic growth of the state and the nation.

Now, coming to the Mr. Virk’s farming method and economic progression. Gurjatinder Singh Virk farms breeds of common carp fishes like Catla and Rohu. 2000 fingerling fish seeds are needs for one pond is of one acre nearly. So, he use to put 2000 fingerling fishes, and the growth of the fishes depends upon the conditions of the water, quality of diet, and the predators present in the water. Generally, he puts two breeds of fishes in one pond and maintain an ideal condition for the good yield. He sold the fishes at Rs 80/Kg, whereas the market price is Rs 120/kg, and despite selling the fishes at a lower prices, he is earning in lakhs and making enough profit.

Gurjatinder Singh Virk has also taken many steps in preserving the nature; one of his important steps, he took is- reducing the carbon footprint by using solar pump sets to irrigate his own kitchen garden and also to fill up the pond. For the good work done by MR. Virk, he has received many awards and achievements, some of them are listed below-

He received District level award for Agriculture Technology Management and letter of Commendation by Roopnagar Administration for best agricultural practices. He was also awarded by Zee Networks for developing the area. In 2011 he was awarded as Best Citizen India Award, later on, followed by Bharat Jyoti Award and Fish Farmer Award.

His good work in the field of farming leads him to achieve membership in many prestigious committees and societies. Today, he is a member of Advisory Committee (ATMA) and Board of Management at GADVASU. He is also one of the 11 members of Kisan Vikas Chamber (which is set up to the pattern of major industry association of India like CII, FICCI, and ASSOCHAM); and the work done by this chamber is to upgrade the state’s deteriorating agrarian economy and bring it back on track by providing farmers with the latest updates related to farming. He was also Ex- grame warden (Forest Department) for Village Cooperative Society under NABARD for the District of Roopnagar and Mohali.

One of the major steps, taken by Gurjatinder Singh Virk in improving the fish farming method was visiting China with ex-chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, to know more about the technology being used in China for fish farming.

Apart from his global achievements, he has also worked very hard in making his surrounding a beautiful place full of greenery. He has his house in the centre of the ponds, and on that piece of land where he has his house, he has grown all types of vegetables and fruits. His farm has peaches, almonds, tangerine, mandarin, mango, pomegranate, apple, pine tree and more than 17 vegetables and pulses. He has developed the land around his house so well that, some of the rarest and common species of birds like fish-hawk, kingfisher, fork tail, geese, parrot, peacocks, etc., can be easily seen chirping around his farm. In short, development work on his homeland has created a diversity of the different species of birds.

All this way, the best motivation and companion who helped him in achieving what he has today, is his wife Rupinder Kaur Virk, she was with him in every step of life and helped him in every work. She also has a professional role in his life and that is maintaining accounting records of all the farm work. In the free time, she also loves to make pickles and candies for selling purpose, by using the own farm grown fruits. Gurjatinder Singh Virk manages all the farm work with the help of his wife and only two servants, and for the future development, he is working on the plan of making his farm a tourist place.

After the China visit Gurjatinder Singh Virk concluded that by using better technology, better production can be obtained, so he wants the farmers to start adopting new technologies for better production. He also mentioned that not having electricity supply 24-hour in their village is resulting into less farming produce and in the future, if they are provided with 24-hour electricity facility, then they can offer better results in the farming field. He thinks that from hard work you can reap anything from a piece of land, the only difference will be in the shape and appearance of the fruit and vegetable.