In a welcome move, the Odisha government announced its decision to provide free smartphones to women farmers in the state and to help them updated about the latest information about agricultural business and practices across the country.
Food and Civil Supplies Minister Surya Narayan Patra on Sunday said: “We will provide smartphones to our women farmers. It will help them get a linkage to the vast agriculture market. They will get an access to the best practices in farming adopted at different places. It will help them keep a track of their agricultural production, weather conditions, loan facilities and improving connectivity.”
He further said: “We will provide the smartphones before the kharif season starts. More than 70 per cent women farmers will get the phones by this time.”
Asked about the glitches faced by farmers during the previous distribution of mobile phones, the Minister said that this time round, the department would be distributing more “user-friendly” android sets.
Earlier, the state government had distributed smartphones to nearly 15,000 farmers. In another development, the state government has sanctioned around Rs 7,600 crore loans to farmers.
“We have already started advertisements urging farmers to register their names for availing the loans,” Patra said.