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Friday, September 22, 2023

Consultation on Public-Private Partnership in Digital Agriculture

The Department of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare, Government of India in association with the World Economic Forum (WEF), India organised a one-day stakeholder consultation on Public-Private Partnership in Digital Agriculture here today.

It was chaired by Shri Manoj Ahuja, Secretary, Department of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare. Shri Ahuja referred to the Union Budget speech for 2022-23 which reads out a policy vision on “Delivery of digital and hi-tech services to farmers with involvement of public sector research and extension institutions along with private agritech player and stakeholders of Agri value chain”.Subsequently, Shri Rajeev Chawla, Chief Knowledge Officer (A&FW) shared insights on the conceptual framework of Public-Private Partnership for Digital Agriculture. He also shared pertinent points on data sharing, technology validation and the need for a sandbox.
Shri Pramod Kumar Meherda, Joint Secretary (Digital Agriculture, DA&FW) spoke about the perspective of digital agriculture involving modern technologies which are transforming the agriculture sector. He also stressed the role of each stakeholder in realising the potential of digital agriculture.

From a state perspective, Shri Ajit Kesari, Additional Chief Secretary, Agriculture, Madhya Pradesh also shared his views on digital agriculture and it’s potential stressing the need for a framework for bringing technology into Agriculture.

Taking the session forward, Shri Purushottam Kaushik, Head, C4IR, WEF-India laid out the plan for stakeholder consultation. Six consultation groups were formed to deliberate on PPP Governance, Data, Sandbox, Access to Markets, Access to Finance and Access to Inputs and Advisories.The consultation was attended by more than 140 participants from diverse stakeholders including different state governments, state agriculture universities, ICAR, agritech start-ups, Agri industry, banks, think tanks, civil society, and farmer organisations.

Shri J. Satyanarayana, Chief Advisor, WEF-India and Shri Rajeev Chawla provided insights on how inputs from the consultation will be further deliberated to develop this initiative. The consultation ended with a vote of thanks by Shri Rakesh Kumari Tiwari, ITS, Director (Digital Agriculture, DA&FW).

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