National Farmers Database:
The Centre has created a National Farmers’ Database with records of 5.5 crore farmers, which it hopes to increase to 8 crore farmers by December by linking it to State land record databases, according to Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar.
- Farmers’ database is key to advances in digital agriculture. Agriculture has to be linked with digital technology, scientific research and knowledge.
- The national database was created by taking data from existing national schemes such as PM-KISAN, soil health cards and the insurance scheme PM Fasal Bima Yojna.
- So far, 5.5 crore farmers had been identified in this manner.
- The Minister urged the States to create their own databases using the national database’s federated structure and also allow linkages to the land records maintained by the States.
- With the help of State governments, a total of eight crore farmers would be included by the end of the year. He also urged to study the Karnataka model for digital agriculture presented at the conference.
- In July, Mr. Tomar told the Lok Sabha that the database could be used “for targeted service delivery with higher efficiency and in a focussed and time-bound manner” and that it was the core for the proposed Agristack digital agriculture ecosystem.
- Already, companies such as Microsoft, Amazon and Patanjali had been asked to develop technology solutions for farmers using data from the database.
- Activists have raised privacy and consent concerns about using farmers’ data in such a way.