The Union Cabinet gave its approval for strengthening and establishment of Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) with an outlay of Rs.3900 crore on Wednesday. The scheme envisages continuation of 642 KVKs established till date and establishment of 109 new KVKs in the XII Plan.
The scheme includes initiation of new components namely ICT in agriculture, Farmer FIRST programme, creation of the Farm Innovation Fund, Disaster Management Fund, Technology Information Units, mini seed processing facilities, micro nutrient analysis facilities, solar panels, vKVK and KVK net, specialized KVKs and e-farmers.
It also aims at extending existing components like Integrated Farming System, rain water harvesting structures, soil and water testing laboratories, minimal processing facilities, carp hatcheries to new KVKs, establishment of 16 new Agricultural Technology Information Centres (ATICs), Network Project on Expert System and New Extension Methodologies and Approaches. The scheme provides support to the Directorates of Extension Education (DEE) of State and Central Agricultural Universities.
The scheme also proposes to enhance the number of Zonal Project Directorates to 11 from the existing eight and creation of one Post of Zonal Project Director and one post of Principal Scientist in each of the three new Zonal Project Directorates.
Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs), a unique model of frontline extension in agriculture, serve as a single window mechanism for addressing the technology needs of farmers with a multidisciplinary approach. KVKs function as knowledge and resource centre at district level and play a role in demonstration of Location Specific technologies.