IMPORTANT ESSAY FOR NABARD GR A & B MAINS 2019 EXAM:
Role of IT in Agriculture:
In the framework of agriculture, impact of information technology can be evaluated broadly under two categories. First, Information technology as a tool for direct contribution to agricultural productivity and secondly, it is an indirect tool for empowering agriculturalists to take informed and quality decisions which will have positive impact on the agriculture and allied activities conducted. Precision agriculture which is popular in developed countries, broadly uses information technology to make direct contribution to agricultural efficiency.
The indirect advantages of information technology in empowering Indian farmer are significant and remains to be exploited. The Indian farmer instantly requires timely and reliable sources of information inputs for taking decisions. Currently, farmers depend on dropping down of decision inputs from conventional sources which are slow and unreliable. The changing environment faced by Indian farmers makes information not just useful, but necessary to stay competitive.
It is well recognized that E-Agriculture is a developing field focusing on the augmentation of agricultural and rural development through better information and communication processes. More precisely, e-Agriculture involves the conceptualization, design, development, evaluation and application of innovative ways to use information and communication technologies in the rural area, with a primary focus on agriculture.
Information technology can aid Indian farmer to get significant information regarding agro-inputs, crop production technologies, agro processing, market support, agro-finance and management of farm agri-business. The agricultural extension tool is becoming dependent on Information technology to provide appropriate and location specific technologies for the farmers to provide timely and proficient advice to the farmers. Information technology can be a best means not only to develop agricultural extension but also to expand agriculture research and education system. Internet can bring revolution in agricultural education management through smart exposure of agricultural teachers and educational planners, class rooms, virtual class as well as dropout agricultural learners. For agricultural extension management, role of Information technology can be encouraged for future resource documentation, as methods of extension and linkage between research and extension.
Information technology in agricultural research management for textual and non-textual documentations and deciding prioritization of research areas needs to be reinforced. The crop forecasting, input management, command area management, watershed management, land and water resources development , drinking water potential mapping precision management, natural disaster management, fishery management , hill area development and post-harvest management are major areas, where Information Technology has vital role. There are some technologies helpful for farmers to enhance productivity. Numerous methods like the practises of remote sensing using satellite technologies, geographical information systems, and agronomy and soil sciences are used to increase the agricultural productivity