Awards: E-India –2010 e-AGRICULTURE Citizen's Choice Award

The Award:
E-India awards are considered prestigious national award as these are bestowed upon the ICT projects that have substantial innovation component.  Bombay Veterinary College was conferred with this award in year 2010 in the category – ICT-enabled Agriculture Initiative of the Year for its project titled ‘ICT-enabled veterinary and extension services in rural areas’.

The Novel Initiative
One of the important factors leading to consistent low animal productivity in Indian livestock is lack of implementation of data recording system.  This is due to large population of animals, distribution in remote areas, small-hold production system and lack of knowledge and resources with farmers and the field para-veterinarian staff.  The novel initiative was to implement simplified data management led preventive veterinary services.  The project also envisaged share processed information with para-veterinary service providers and farmers as text SMS in regional language.

Under the project centralized database of 5000 cows / buffaloes in each centre was created in Herdman-coop platform on web-server and the data access was provided to private milk processors and dairy cooperatives.  The veterinary and para-veterinary staff registered farmers and animals in the database.  For providing veterinary and extension services the analysed data was sent as text SMS on services and management alerts to para-vet and farmers as text SMS.  The farmers and service providers were trained in using data to take management decisions. 

Impact of the Initiative: 
There was remarkable improvement in quality, continuity and accountability in veterinary services.  The data analysis provided information on conception rates, bull fertility, metabolic and deficiency diseases and problems related with milk production and breeding.  Immediate attention to under-performing animals led to proper identification of the cause and corrective actions were initiated.  Availability of performance data also resulted in fetching of higher price of good animals.   The success of the project can be gauged from the fact that these two dairy cooperatives continue to use Herdman and now have evolved ‘basket services model’ for their farmers.

The project was implemented at Chitale Dairy, Bhilvadi, Sangli and Rajhans Milk Union, Sangamner, district Ahmednagar in Maharashtra.