Software Technology Parks of India (STPI) distributed Rs. 5 Lakhs each to 10 shortlisted Teams under the Smart Farm Grant Challenge Programme. The grant distribution and the award ceremony were held at the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, New Delhi, where Sh. Alkesh Kumar Sharma (Secretary, MeitY) handed over the cheques to the winning teams. The award ceremony was attended by Sh. Arvind Kumar (DG, STPI), Dr Saurabh Srivastava (Chairman Emeritus TiE Delhi-NCR and former Chairman NASSCOM), Sh. Roshan Lal Tamak (Executive Director, DCM Sriram) and senior officials from the Ministry and STPI.
The 10 shortlisted teams were A2P Energy Solution Private Limited, Ag Automate Private Limited, Aigret Innovations India Pvt. Ltd, ARMS 4 AI Pvt. Ltd, Bharat Rohan Airborne Innovations Private Limited, Plaksha University, G B Pant University of Agriculture and Technology, Pantnagar, Innosapien Agro Technologies Pvt Ltd, Satyukt Analytics Pvt Ltd and TFBOT PRIVATE LIMITED.
“Last-mile innovations focused on smallholder farmers are key for India's Agri & allied ecosystem and Agri #startups should develop their products keeping smallholder farmers in mind,” said Sh. Alkesh Kumar Sharma, Secretary, MeitY.
“Agriculture is one of the key economic sectors of the country & #innovation through ICT enablement for this sector will help in achieving the target of $5 trillion economy by 2025,”mentioned Sh. Arvind Kumar, DG, STPI on the occasion.
“Increasing productivity of Agriculture is a critical requirement of our farmers. Iam delighted that MeitY has come up with the SFGC which focusses on their problem statement and invite Start-ups to find solution in an innovative way and financially support them,” accentuated Dr Saurabh Srivastava, Chairman, Emeritus, TiE Delhi-NCR (former Chairman NASSCOM).
“Optimum time of Sugarcane Harvest can be predicted using technologies like AI & ML etc,” said Sh. Roshan Lal Tamak, Executive Director &CEO, DCM Shriram.
The Smart Farm Grant Challenge (SFGC) programme was launched on 9th May 2022 by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) with grant-in-aid of Rs. 2.54 Cr. STPI is the designated implementation agency with Neuron CoE at Mohali as the anchor CoE. The challenge programme was launched to identify path-breaking solutions from startups, Innovators, Entrepreneurs etc. to address the problem statements identified for sugarcane harvest. Sugarcane is an important commodity for human consumption as well as trade. Information and communication technology in agriculture (ICT in agriculture) has the potential to significantly impact the agriculture sector by utilizing ICT tools.
The programme received an overwhelming response and received a total of 474 applications. 108 applications found suitable were further screened and 25 selected were pitched before the Jury committee of members from Industry, Academia, Domain experts and stakeholders.
The Jury’s recommendation of the 10 best proposals that have shown innovation and technological acumen to predict the optimum time of sugarcane harvest in a given plot area with reasonable accuracy are being provided financial support of INR 5 Lakhs each to develop a working prototype of the proposed solution within three months duration
These 10 teams will now have to develop a working prototype of the proposed solution within three months and compete again to enter the next critical phases of the Smart-farm Grant Challenge. As part of the next phases, they will demonstrate the prototype, get selected for Stage-2, receive Rs. 20 lakh support, develop the final product and compete again for the grand award of Rs 50 lakh along-with support of INR 10 lakhs per year for next 2 years towards Operations & Maintenance. Teams having innovative approaches, solutions which are reliable, having accuracy in percentage, correlation with the real time data etc. and can cater to scalability, usability, ease of deployment & roll-out, have a great chance to progress further.
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