India is an agriculture based country. 11% of the global produce comes from our country. Half of the total population is directly or indirectly linked to it. Yet on the other hand, India hosts the world’s largest number of mal nourished people. Contrary isn’t it? Agriculture being this important to us, still it took decades for the government to introduce digitalization in the rural part of India. Digitalization has several benefits especially for the farmers. Lets discuss this in detail.
How did the government introduce Digitalization in the Rural India?
With more than 600 million internet users as of now. India is one among the fastest and largest growing market place for the digital consumers. But we can observe that most of the users are from the urban locality. Therefore, the government too several initiatives to spread this digitalization into the sub urban and rural part. That contains most of the India. Programmes like “Digital India” or “Jan Dhan Savings Accounts” have done their best to bridge this gap. From the year 2017 to 2019 the rural internet subscribers are from 32 to 38% .
How can Digitalization help the farmers?
66% of the total Indian population lives in villages. Agriculture being their prime source of income.
- With the use of internet the they will be introduced to better farming methods and newer technology.
- Moreover they will come to know about locally suited seeds and fertilizers that will enhance their yield.
- Digital phones and even common computers aids the farmers with the on going climatic changes. And how to adapt to it.
- Additionally they can listen to the weather forecast and protect themselves and their crops as much as possible.
- Most importantly, digitalization will provide immense help in finances.
- The farmers can be aware of the ongoing prices. And sell their hard earned crops at the best prices that they deserve.
- At places this can also help the farmers get rid of the middle man and save them a lot of money.
- It informs them to protect the yield from pests and diseases. For instance the fall army worms or locusts.
- Technology can provide solutions to the cultivators about decreasing waste, boosting outputs. And also increasing their profit margin.
- They can learn about less water usage. With that newer techniques which will further lead to reduced impact on ecosystem.
- Farmers can be up to date about the advances in machinery. This will help expand the speed, scale and productivity of a piece of land.
Digitization will bridge the gap between a farmer and advanced technologies –
Its high time to introduce Smart Farming and Precision Farming into our fields. This will not only increase productivity but also efficiency. Drones and robots are extensively used all over the world in agriculture except for India. These one time investments seems expensive but in the long run will help our farmers.
Government should start including engineering students in the fields as there innovations can aid in the agricultural aspects. Most of the yields are carried out by small scale farmers rather than large scalers. And these are the people that need the foremost assistance.
With the increase in soil erosion, deforestation and soil pollution its very easy to destroy the natural soil biology. Most of the farmers do it unintentionally. But digitization will improve there awareness. And provide for several other ways to use the resources properly.
Nevertheless, we have been talking about all these technical aspects. But electrical connectivity is as important as digital connectivity is. Hence our government should provide better and reliable power supply to every nooks and crooks of the farming community.
In Conclusion, Digitalization is the future of our economy. That includes agricultural sector also. But first effort is required to make the farmers familiar to these foreign subjects. Acceptance is the key here. And that should be understood by the government. They must spend time with these cultivators to acquire knowledge about their needs. Once the farmers acknowledge the benefits technology can provide they will be quick to learn. Accessibility, ease of use, efficiency and familiarity of technical advances will be accepted. The emerging giant that is the private sector must also recognize it and join forces. This will further lead the IT companies to show interest in agriculture.
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