Rice (Oryza sativa L.) production constitutes the major economic activity and a key source of employment for the rural population of India. Manual transplanting of paddy in puddle field is a very tedious job and involves lot of fatigue and drudgery. To reduce the labour demand and time consumption, power operated transplanters are also available but the poor socio- economic conditions of Indian farmers restrict them to adopt modern technology. Keeping this in view, the present study was planned to compare the economic cost and the rate of human drudgery among female farm workers, during manual hand transplanting with the power operated eight- row paddy transplanter. For the ergonomical evaluation, twenty female subjects were selected in the age group of 20- 55 years. Physiological parameters like HR, energy expenditure, TCCW and PCW etc. were measured in different transplanting operations. The mean value of working heart rate was assessed to be maximum 138.32Â±7.67 beats/ min in manual hand transplanting and 110.12Â±5.79 beats/min in eight- row paddy transplanter. The energy expenditure rate was measured 18.40Â±0.95 kJ/min in local transplanting method and reduced to 15.17Â±1.68 kJ/min with paddy transplanter. TCCW was found to be 1965.5Â±63.66 beats for manual transplanting of paddy and 770.58Â±39.93 beats by the use of paddy transplanter whereas the PCW was calculated 227.98Â±22.17 in traditional method and 85.23Â±2.64 in improved method. The economic cost of mechanized transplanting was 47% less than conventional method.
Drudgery assessment, Economical cost, Female agriculture workers, Paddy transplanting, Physiological parameters
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