The Gujarat government has decided to provide financial assistance of up to Rs 1,500 to farmers in the state for purchasing a smartphone, as per a notification issued by the state agriculture department.
The scheme is meant to encourage the farmers to buy smartphones which could be used for various purposes towards increasing their farm income, at a time when the prevalence of digital services in the field of agriculture is growing every day, it said.
Any landholding farmer in Gujarat can apply for the assistance of 10 per cent of the total cost of a smartphone not exceeding Rs 1,500 on i-khedut portal to avail of the benefit of this scheme, said the Government Resolution (GR) issued by the state’s Agriculture, Farmers Welfare and Cooperation department on Saturday.
The assistance is valid only for the cost of the smartphone and not for any other accessories such as power backup device, earphones, charger etc., it said. All landholding farmers are eligible for this scheme, but only one beneficiary in a joint holding farm will be eligible.
The smartphone will make it easy for a farmer to access information regarding weather forecast, possible pest infestation, various schemes of the agriculture department, modern farm techniques and expert opinion etc. it said.
The smartphone can also be utilised by farmers to apply online for various schemes of the state government meant for them by using smartphone facilities such as camera, emails, texts and multimedia services, GPS, web browser, internet connectivity among others, the GR said.
Once the application is approved, the beneficiary farmers will have to provide a copy of the purchase bill of the smartphone, mobile IMEI number, a cancelled cheque etc.