Shivani Jha

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Posts by Shivani

  • Time and distance will not matter now….

    August 11th, 2014

    In a diverse and vast nation like India, 68.7%of the population inhabits rural areas (Source World Bank 2011). There is still a high dependence on agriculture. Between 1980 and 2011 agriculture dependent population in India grew by 50%, which was the highest for any country in world (Source ToI). There is an increased demand for better technology, infrastructure and relevant accessible information to support agriculture and livelihood sector owing to high dependence.

    Soil Desalination for Vegetable CultivationHowever, despite the heavy requirement there exists systemic weaknesses,  complicated by low awareness about services, diversity (Soil, water availability and irrigation, climate) and climate change.

    Responding to this urgent requirement for practical answers to the complicated issues, an initiative has been taken in which time and distance will not be barriers any more for farmers at village level.

    This is a pilot initiative in of Practical Answers in 2 states of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan in partnership with READ India. Under the pilot project, the queries of farmers are collected by field based coordinators through individual and group interaction and the farmers can also post their queries through mobile phone on a toll free number. The queries are responded to by an agricultural expert based in Delhi. The answers are posted back through mobile technology within 72 hours which can then be  accessed by farmers.

    A very early reaction to the pilot initiative by Practical Answers has been welcomed by farmers in Geejgarh village in Rajasthan by saying “ time and distance will not matter for us now for obtaining practical advice on agriculture ……..”

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