JUN 29

Preliminary   > Agriculture   >   Miscellaneous   >   Miscellaneous

Why in news?

  • The Government of India is urgently building a Digital Ecosystem for covering everything related to agriculture – including farmers’ database, land records, soil types, crops, etc called agristack.

What is agristack?

  • ‘AgriStack’ is a collection of technology-based interventions in agriculture, which will enable Companies and Centre to use data to provide services/products/advice to farmers.
  • The National Agri Data Stack is supposed to build innovative agri focuses solutions leveraging technologies such as AI, advanced analytics, Blockchain, IOT to contribute effectively towards Doubling Farmers Income.
  • IT also means they will nurture start-ups in the above spaces who are focuses on building technology solutions to improve efficacies of farmers.
  • The sole objective of the initiative is to make best efforts at building an effective digital solution stack that can help enhance livelihood of farmers and promote inclusive development of agriculture sector in India.

Companies that are involved:

  • An MoU has been signed for a  Pilot Project in 100 villages of UP, MP, Gujarat, Haryana, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh with Microsoft to create a ‘Unified Farmer Service Interface’ through its cloud computing services, which will be the underlying digital infrastructure.
  • An MoU with Amazon has been signed for creating the ‘startups ecosystem’ for apps to be created using all the data in AgriStack.
  • An MoU with Patanjali has been signed for creating the farm management solutions (precision agriculture in which farms have sensors connected to the internet - the Internet of Things of IoT - to automate farming) and  with ESRI India for creating Geographic Information System (GIS) solutions towards satellite information based farmer information.

What is the concern?

  • There is  major worry that  the digital date generated is likely to push farmers even faster into the clutches of companies & agribusiness - with no proper safeguards to protect their rights and interests.
  •  Private entities would also be able to exploit farmers’ data to whatever extent they wish.

Prelims Question

Consider the following statements regarding the proposed Agristack:
1.It will contain information like land records and soil types of farmlands in India.
2.It will be built completely by National Informatics Centre.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a)1 only
(b)2 only
(c)Both 1 and 2
(d)Neither 1 nor 2

Answer to the Prelims Question