Kolkata: Electronics technology and AI tools can function as a facilitating mechanism to the agriculture sector in the country, from harvesting to sorting technology, and help reduce the farmer’s cost and enhance their incomes, Secretary in the Union Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) S Krishnan said in

“There is harvesting, post-harvesting technology and sorting-Electronics and ICT. These are productive enhancing technologies. We also talk about value-added agriculture in fruits and vegetables which means you can apply technology more effectively and control those factors in GreenHouse through sensors,” Krishnan said. MeitY is running a project on how to pluck apples in Kashmir.

“Around 20% of India’s GDP is generated from agriculture while 50-60% population is engaged in agri sector,” he said.

Krishnan emphasized on the transformative potential of technology in the agricultural sector and highlighted the importance of employing technology in an ethical and inclusive manner for the advancement of society.

He noted that the technological solutions developed by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) have yielded lasting improvements in agricultural productivity in the country.

C-DAC-Kolkata, in collaboration with the University of Calcutta, kicked off a two-day conference ‘International Conference on Systems and Technologies for Smart Agriculture (ICSTA 2023)’ on Tuesday. The conference focuses on transformative advancements in the field of agriculture.

Centre Head & senior Director of C-DAC Kolkata Aditya Kumar Sinha said, “ICSTA 2023 is a pivotal event that bridges the gap between cutting-edge technology and sustainable agricultural practices. By bringing .together experts, scientists, and industry leaders, we aim to foster a collaborative environment to help innovation in the agriculture sector for sustainable development.”

ICSTA 2023 functions as a platform for the scientific community and industry to deliberate on agricultural practices that preserve earth’s natural resources, elevate crop quality, protect the environment, and mitigate health hazards for farmers through the integration of electronics and ICT technologies.

The conference, organized by MeitY, highlights research and applications, showcasing emerging technologies and information management for the betterment of the agricultural sector.

Special focus of the conference was Vision-guided AI-enabled Robotic Apple Harvester, IoT Solution for Poultry Farm Practice, Electronics Platform to Monitor Cattle Health and Milk Quality, AI-based Air Quality Monitoring System (AQ-AIMS) for Mine and Cement Industries, and e-Quality – Electronic Quality Assessment Solution for Agricultural Commodities for eNAM.

The conference was inaugurated by S. Krishnan and distinguished guests Vice Chancellor of Sher-E-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Dean- Faculty of Engineering and Technology(University of Calcutta) Debatosh Guha, among others, attended the conference. The General Chair of the conference was Alokesh Ghosh, Associate Director of C-DAC, Kolkata and Amlan Chakraborty, Director A.K. Choudhury School of IT-University of Calcutta.

The event was participated by John K. Schuller from University of Florida, Professor Ganesh Bora from Fayetteville State University, Phillip Bradford from University of Connecticut USA, among others.

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