mKisan Call Centre successfully launched across 3 states

In a new development, mKisan has recently launched a call centre across three Hindi speaking states of central and eastern India, (Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh). By dialing 556780 from their mobile phone, farmers can access the mKisan service and call centre in these three states. The call centre will help farmers to directly connect with subject matter experts to get answers to their farm related queries. As part of the call centre, a farmers’ interface and an experts’ interface have been created on an IVR (Interactive Voice Response) system. The interfaces allow users to select a subject matter (e.g. insect related problems), record a query, answer a query, listen to the solution to an answered query etc. Using this system, if an expert is not available, farmers can record their queries and the expert can provide answers to queries when they are logged-in through their mobile phone. A usage report based on call centre data gathered in 20 days of July 2013 shows caller trends (see table below). The report is quite encouraging for the first month of operation. The call centre will help to generate analytics on call patterns for crops & livestock and will highlight the kind of problems which are faced by farmers in the field. Both the number and types of query will be recorded and individual farmer queries will be analyzed to develop a picture of the everyday issues the farmers are dealing with.

July 2013 call centre analytics on calls received by subject matter

July 2013 call centre analytics on calls received by subject matter

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Visit of Janny Vos to a regional office of IKSL

Janny Vos, interacting with IKSL people

Janny Vos, CABI’s Director of Strategic Partnerships, visited India in May and travelled
to one of the regional offices of IKSL located in Chandigarh. The regional office covers
the three north Indian states of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan. During her visit, Dr Vos
spent time with both the Content Team and the Kisan Call Centre team, understanding
how they work in delivering the agro-advisory service. She saw how content is developed
and disseminated to the farmers according to their information needs, which can vary
by season and crop. The content has to account for the wide variety of crops grown in
the region, such as cereals & fruit, and must also be aligned with crop calendars. She
also saw how the helpline service works and provides advice to farmers based both on previous
experience and on the factsheets that have been developed by CABI under Direct2Farm.
Lastly, she learned about a special phone-in program that runs once a week and a
quiz for farmers operated through the service.  At the end, Dr Vos was highly impressed with the scale and thoroughness of the implementation of the IKSL service.