Kalahandi: When everything is getting hi-tech, why not farming? In these days of unpredictable climate change, precise information on weather conditions can go a long way in helping farmers avoid losses.
Ajit Kumar Nayak of Dahal village under Narla block in Kalahandi district is an example of one such farmer who has benefited by updating himself in farming and using new techniques.
Dahal village is around 30 km far from Bhawanipatna district headquarters. Most of the people of this village depend on agriculture and grow paddy, cotton, onion, tomato etc. The farmers in this village are far from the government extension system due to poor education and economic conditions. Apart from weather advisory, they need agro advisory like seed selection, fertilizer application, green manure, pest and disease management and market information (mostly for selling cotton).
In November, 2014, Ajit Nayak enrolled with Reliance Foundation Information Services (RFIS) and Regional Research Technology Transfer Station (RRTTS-Bhawanipatna) for getting crop based mobile audio advisory on paddy, cotton, onion and tomato.
After receiving the weather based agro advisory, he could take the right decision for his farming. He started sharing and enrolling about 25 other farmers from his own village.
After getting the RFIS mobile advisory, they have one common meeting in the village. They discuss and share information, applications, best practices and seek clarifications among themselves.
Apart from his own villagers, Ajit has also enrolled 40 farmers from his relatives’ villages like Cheliamohal, Singari Bahal, Nuapada, Lakhguda and Goringtadar, following which to take benefit of RFIS advisory.
They saved their cotton and paddy through mobile based audio advisory during cyclone Hudhud. They also saved Blast in paddy nursery by spraying carbendazim. Apart from this, they also got information on how to save cotton crop from sheath, get better harvesting and reduce chemical fertilisers by incorporating young seedlings.