Agrarian Development Institute for Sustenance and Improved Livelihood (ADISIL)

  • Madurai

About Us

Who are we?

We are a cohesive group of socially concerned professionals having considerable experience in different fields and having diverse backgrounds, including development work, farming, journalism and engineering. We have been continuously reflecting on the importance, relevance, needs and challenges of sustainable development in India in the wake of the changing global socio-economic scenario. We also wished to find expressions to our common vision and aspirations related to sustainable development and add a concrete approach to development practice.

Traditional knowledge systems and technologies are Nature-friendly. They decentralize the production and distribution of various goods and services. Hence, they naturally helped people live in a sustainabe manner even as they prospered. We realize that traditional knowledge should be implemented with current scientific input. We have already continuously working with farming community in a non-formal way. After that we have planned to establish a resource center functioning in this perspective can fulfill the requirements of the weaker section of the society and the environment.

All these factors put together led to the setting up of ADISIL (Agrarian Development Institute for Sustenance and Improved Livelihood), in February 2005, as a Public Trust for educational and charitable purposes.


While the world food system is struggling to feed millions of people adequately, 0.7% of the world’s productive agricultural land is lost annually. Soil fertility and resources are being irreversibly degraded by unsustainable farming practices. Basic water resources are rapidly being depleted by excessive exploitation for inefficient irrigation systems and by deforestation. High yields in agricultural production have all too frequently become dependent on chemical inputs of pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Surface and ground waters are being polluted by chemical inputs. Small and marginal farmers are thrown out of their land due to bank debt incurred by practicing chemical intensive agriculture. They then migrate from rural areas to city slums. Their living condition is horrible. In many parts of India small and marginal farmers are committing suicide. All grains and greens are seriously affected by toxicity. Consumers are afflicted by unpredictable diseases due to pesticide residues. Agrochemicals contaminants are even found in mother’s milk. The entire globe is in a poisonous circle. The degradation of ecological, economical, social and health systems is worsened through the so-called modern chemical intensive agriculture.

In Tamil Nadu, the southern part of India, small and marginal farmers sell their lands to rich absent landlords. They are unable to cultivate their lands due to exorbitant cost of inputs and infrastructure, including large-scale irrigation facilities. Traders from urban areas purchase the lands and they pledge the lands to banks for getting loans for nonagricultural purposes. The lands are abandoned and kept idle. The purchasing power of the pois thus lowered and abject poverty rises. Most of the small and marginal farmers go to bed hungry every night. Their debt keeps escalating. Sustainable agriculture, which implies farming using local resources only, is the only way for them to escape from the debt burden.