Staff Reporter

More than 7,500 farmers trained

KOCHI: The Vegetable and Fruit Promotion Council, Keralam (VFPCK), has trained more than 7,500 farmers through its innovative Agrisat facility, using the central and regional studios set up under the Edusat programme, an initiative of the Education Department with technical backing from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

This is the first time that an e-learning programme is going to the farms using uplinking stations through satellite interactive terminals provided by ISRO. The Education Department's programme uses VICTER Virtual Classroom Technology on Edusat for Rural Schools for its education endeavour.

The VFPCK has training centres in all the 14 districts of the State, making it possible for farmers to come together at these centres to attend online classes and interact with experts through videoconferencing.

Chief Executive Officer of VFPCK Ashok Kumar Thekkan said the council was emphasising the need to provide farm-training programmes to young people and that was the reason why the e-training programme was being made available to vocational higher secondary students. The course content for the e-learning programme on agriculture was being finalised by the council for this purpose.

Mr. Thekkan said the 10-day training programme provided a direct opportunity to farmers to meet experts on a real-time basis. Farmers had been trained in 10 specific areas. The directness of the interaction had helped the content of the training programme to be conveyed fully to the farmers.