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July 7, 2015

Helpline on prices of agri-produce for Bengal farmers

Helpline on prices of agri-produce for Bengal farmers

Farmers in West Bengal will soon be able to get information on prices of agricultural commodities by just dialling a number.

Developed by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), the speech-based access for agricultural commodity prices in Bengali technology would enable farmers and other interested users to obtain the latest price of agro-products in each district.

The Bengal government will launch this system, which is user-friendly and does not require internet connection or computers. Anyone with a landphone or an ordinary mobile can use it. There is no need to type or touch, it converts speech into text.

The voice-query system allows users to key in specific numbers, say aloud the name of the agricultural produce and get the required data. It is based on voice samples of 1,500 farmers in Bengali. The query is routed through a server which fetches the price and conveys it.

The Socio Economic and Caste Census, 2011 finds that the number of mobile-phone connections outnumbers that of landlines in rural India. As many as 68 percent of households own only a mobile phone, one percent own only a landline phone, and 2.7 percent own both.