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Online Courses on Newest Agriculture Trends is Helping Thousands of Farmers Every Year

District Agricultural Training Centre (DATC) in Mysuru has provided online training on various agricultural trends to over 10,000 farmers.

Sugandh Bhatnagar

Online lectures provided by the District Agricultural Training Centre in Mysuru serve farmers not just in remote and inaccessible areas on the outskirts of forests and national parks in Mysuru district, but also farmers across Karnataka. 

Over the last year, the District Agricultural Training Centre (DATC) in Mysuru has provided online training on various agricultural trends to over 10,000 farmers. 

The DATC at Naganahalli launched the idea two years ago with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic to keep farmers up to date on the newest developments and to propose remedies and it has continued with the concept following a phenomenal response. 

Initially, the training was intended for Mysuru farmers. However, because mobile phones are ubiquitous, even in rural regions, and WhatsApp is a popular messaging service, the links have been extensively circulated among the agricultural community, according to G.H. Yogesh, Deputy Director, DATC. 

As a consequence, the online classes serve farmers not just in remote and difficult locations on the outskirts of forests and national parks in Mysuru district, but also across Karnataka. 

The DATC was founded to provide agricultural authorities with field and technical support, and it has been providing regular training for them. However, with the advent of the Covid-19 outbreak, the DATC decided to try giving trainings on online mode. The notion has gained popularity among the general population. 

"During the current fiscal year, 56 online training sessions have been held, and 10,806 farmers have received instruction." Yogesh explained that extra classes will be introduced in two months. The notion has piqued the government's interest, and similar classes are now being held in other areas as well. 

In 2020-21, 84 online training seminars were held, with 28,778 farmers participating. 

“There was a time when connectivity was an issue, but even that is more or less resolved. Farmers tend to work in the fields and at the same time listen to the expert-speak on various topics that are of relevance to them,” according to Yogesh. 

The DATC's traditional offline training at the institute has a restricted reach because registration is required, and the course lasts three days. Few people can afford to be absent from work for three days. However, with the online training approach, students may continue to work while receiving expert comments. 

Over the previous two years, training programmes have varied from rainwater gathering and organic farming to dealing with crop disease outbreaks and correct seed selection. 

Encouraged by the success, the DATC began a series of digital outreach programmes to reach out to additional farmers. 

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