Transfer of Technology Projects of ICAR.

(Part 5, Transfer of Technology for Livestock Development, VAHEE) 

Topic: Transfer of Technology Projects of Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR): Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Agricultural Technology Information Center (ATIC), Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA), National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP), Rashtiya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) etc. 

Transfer of Technology Projects of ICAR

by Dr. Debasish Saha, Department of VAHEE, F/O-VAS, of WBUAFS.

Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Agricultural Technology Information Center (ATIC), Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA), National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP), Rashtiya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY)

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Integrated Rural Development Programme 

The concept of Integrated Rural Development Programmes (IRDP) was first proposed and started in 1976-77 with the intention to end the multiplicity of programmes of development through multiple agencies. It has the unified field instead of the multipurpose approach of the Community Development Programme. 

It is not a technique, but a plan of detailed action for development of the rural areas. It was introduced in India on an expanded scale in 1978-79 in 2300 Blocks. In 1979-80, another 300 blocks were added to the programme. 

But from 2 October 1980, i.e., after the launching of the Sixth Five year Plan, the programme was extended to all the blocks of the country under the revised 20 - Point Programme. 

In each block, 600 families were to be covered under the programme and out of these, 400 were to be covered through agriculture and related activities, 100 families through rural industries and there of 100 families under rural services, business enterprises etc. 

The allocation of fund per block was Rs. 35 lakhs and this was to be equally shared between the Centre and the State Governments. In addition to this, provision was to mobilize institutional finances for investment under the programme. 

  • IRDP is a major self-employment programme for poverty alleviation launched in 1978-79. 
  • Under these schemes, both wage employment and self-employment are provided to the people below the poverty line. 
  • This is a centrally sponsored scheme funded on 50:50 basis by the center and the state. 
  • It is stipulated that at least 50 per cent of the assisted families should belong to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Categories. It is also required that at least 40 per cent of those assisted should be women under this programme. 
  • Any persons who are below poverty line can avail the subsidy under the IRDP schemes. 
  • The target group comprises of small and marginal farmers, tenants and sharecroppers, landless labourers and rural artisans. 
  • Members of Scheduled Caste and tribal communities are also in the target group as they have been suffering from economic and social handicaps.


IRDP is to provide suitable income generating assets through a mix of subsidy and credit to Below Poverty Line (BPL) families with a view to bring them above the poverty line. 

It aims generally at the attainment of the following three objectives 

  • Economic development, which ensures overcoming the vicious circle of poverty, a major hindrance to social security and stability. This includes raising productivity of the rural people and thus increasing their income, ensuring equitable distribution of income and participation in economic activity and productive employment by all sectors, properly utilizing local resources including the management of land, improving basic social and economic infrastructure and encouraging popular participation in decision making by all the sectors of the community. 
  • Social development, which aims at effecting, desired social change at a speed that commensurate with the development of material resources. 
  • Educational and cultural development, which aims at equipping the rural population with the means to attain the goal of economic and social development.

Launch of IRDP 

The implementation of the programme was on October 2nd 1980 and was carried out by a special administrative set up in each district referred to as District Rural Development Agencies (DRDA). 

It was launched in three phases 

  • Phase - Year - Coverage 
  • First - 1976 20 - selected districts 
  • Second - 1978 - 79 2300 blocks 
  • Third - 2nd Oct 1980 - All over India

Approach to Rural Development Under IRDP

  • While increasing agricultural productivity and providing infrastructure had been and would remain the major goal, the approach attempts to be more egalitarian, encompassing all the narrow barriers and embracing, continuous and vigorous national activity, commensurate with the magnitude of the problem itself. 
  • In brief, the overall concern is on community orientation, minimum state intervention, mass participation, self-reliance, non-specialization and pooling of local resources and service to people. 
  • The approach of the programme is based on decentralized micro-level planning at the block level. 
  • It is to bring about integration in the area approach and the beneficiary approach of the various rural development schemes currently in operation to achieve the objectives of rural development in terms of production and full employment.

Philosophy Behind the IRDP Programme 

  • A large body of economic experts has shown in their studies that economic growth may be able to raise per capita incomes in developing countries, but it may not be accompanied by a reduction of poverty as well as elimination of unemployment and under employment. 
  • The percolation of benefits of economic growth to backward areas and the poor people has not taken place. To remedy this situation it was thought necessary that a direct attack on poverty should be made. This necessitated programmes for alleviating rural poverty by endowing the poor with productive assets or skills so that they can employ themselves usefully to earn greater income and thus cross the poverty line. 
  • To achieve this objective, draft sixth plan 1978-1983 (revised) visualized an integrated programme of rural development, within which a specially directed programme for the rural poor was conceived.

Programme Included in IRDP 

  • Employment Guarantee Scheme 
  • Food for Work Programme (FWP) 
  • Small Farmers Development Agency (SFDA) 
  • Marginal Farmers and Agricultural Labourers (MFAL) 
  • Drought Prone Area Programme (DPAP) 
  • Desert Development Programme (DDP) 
  • Command Area Development Programme (CADP), etc.

Training of Rural Youth for Self Employment (TRYSEM) 

TRYSEM was launched as a centrally sponsored scheme on 15th of August 1979. The objective is to train the rural youth in the age group of 18 - 35 years in acquiring necessary skills and technology to take up self employment in agriculture and allied activities including animal husbandry, industry, services and business. Emphasis is also laid on systematic marketing as well as exploring possibility of setting up groups for the manufacture/ assembly of non- traditional items for which there is good demand. The beneficiaries of TRYSEM are assisted by IRDP after the training is completed. 

This scheme helped not only in improving the skills of a large number of youth but also in their self- employment. A major chunk of the beneficiaries belonged to SC/ST and women as per the provisions of the scheme.

Development of Women and Children in Rural Areas (DWCRA) 

This programme envisages formation of groups of 10 - 15 rural women and each group is involved in carrying out income generating activities. Each group is given a revolving fund of Rs.15,000 which is shared equally by the Centre , State and UNICEF. This fund is later enhanced up to 25,000 and the UNICEF also bears the expenditure on the staff salaries for a period of six years, which is fully reimbursed.

Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana 

On 1 April 1999, the IRDP and allied programmes, including the Million Wells Scheme (MWS), were merged into a single programme known as Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (SGSY). 

The SGSY is conceived as a holistic programme of micro enterprise development in rural areas with emphasis on organizing the rural poor into self-help groups for capacity-building, planning of activity, infrastructure support, technology, credit and marketing linkages. 

It seeks to promote a network of agencies, namely, the District Rural Development Agencies (DRDAs), line departments of state governments, banks, NGOs and Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) for implementation of the programme. 

The SGSY recognizes the need to focus on key activities and the importance of activity clusters. The programme has in-built safeguards for the weaker sections. It insists that 50 per cent of the self-help groups must be formed exclusively by women and that 50 per cent of the benefits should flow to SCs and STs. It is the merger of the following schemes 

  • IRDP: Integrated Rural Development Programme 
  • DWCRA: Development of Women And Children in Rural Areas 
  • TRYSEM: Training of Rural Youth for Self Employment o SITRA: Supply of Improved Technical kits to Rural Areas 
  • GKY: Ganga Kalyan Yojana o MWS: Million Wells Scheme 

Credit: 75:25 ( Centre : State ) 

Aim: To establish large number of micro-enterprises in rural areas. 

Target group: Person assisted under this programme will be known as Swarozgaris, not beneficiaries as in IRDP. Group is Self Help Group (SHG). 

Principle of SGSY: Every family assisted by the scheme will be brought above the poverty line in three years and the programme aims at creating substantial additional income for rural poor. 

General action 

It is proposed to cover 30% of rural poor in each block in 5 years. 

SGSY is a holistic programme of micro enterprises covering all the aspects of self employment, viz. organization of rural poor into SHG and their capacity building, planning of activity clusters, infrastructure buildup, technology, credit and marketing.

 SGSY lays emphasis on activity cluster based on the resources, occupational skills of the people and availability of markets, selection of key activities will be with the approval of panchayat samitis at the block level and the District Rural Development Agency / Zilla Parishad at the District level. 

Major share of SGSY assistance will be in activity clusters to enable extension of appropriate facilities.

Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA)

ATMA is a society of key stakeholders involved in agricultural activities for sustainable agricultural development in the district. The registered office of the ATMA is located at district collect orate premises.

It is a focal point for integrating Research and Extension activities and decentralizing day to day management of the public Agricultural Technology System (ATS). It is a registered society responsible for technology dissemination at the district level. As a society, it receives and expend project funds, enter into contracts and agreements and maintain revolving accounts that can be used to collect fees and thereby recovering operating cost. 

The ATMA at district level is responsible for all the technology dissemination activities at the districtlevel. It has linkage with all the line departments, research organizations, non-governmental organizations and agencies associated with agricultural development in the district. Research and Extension units within the project districts such as ZRS or substations, KVKs and the key line Departments of Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Horticulture and Fisheries etc. are constituent members of ATMA. Each Research-Extension(R-E) unit retain its institutional identity and affiliation but programmes and procedures concerning district-wiseR-E activities are determined by ATMA Governing Board and implemented by its Management Committee (MC).

Aims and Objectives: 

  • To identify location specific needs of farming community for farming system based agricultural development; 
  • To set up priorities for sustainable agricultural development with a Farming Systems Approach; 
  • To draw plans for production based system activities to be undertaken by farmers/ultimate users; 
  • To execute plans through line departments, training institutions, NGOs, farmers organizations and allied institutions; 
  • To coordinate efforts being made by various line departments, NGOs, farmers organizations and allied institutions to strengthen research extension-farmers linkages in the district and to promote collaboration and coordination between various State funded technical departments; 
  • To facilitate the empowerment of farmers/producers through assistance for mobilization, organization into associations, cooperatives etc. for their increased participation in planning, marketing, technology dissemination and agro-processing etc. 
  • To facilitate market interventions for value addition to farm produce


To attain the objectives and aim, the ATMA may: 

  • Take steps to ensure that problems, constraints and needs to the farming system based agriculture development are identified and diagnosed periodically. 
  • Draw up plans for an integrated research-extension linkage approach for farming systems based agriculture development. 
  • Ensure that line departments/institutions draw up integrated development plan based upon resources available with them and incremental/supplementary resources mobilized by the ATMA. 
  • Forge or develop systematic linkages between national/state/district institutions of excellence in the field of agriculture and marketing. 
  • Ensure capacity building of manpower engaged in overall agricultural development and strengthen infrastructural support for the benefit of the farmer/producer. 
  • Create suitable mechanism to ensure location specific adaptive, indigenous knowledge based research. 
  • Ensure adequate linkages and frequent interaction between scientists, extension functionaries and technicians & farmers, in order to prepare an integrated plan to effectuate their linkage, support each other, better understanding and appreciation of their problems, means adopted to sort out problems and plans etc., and to develop a mechanism of feed back;
  • Ensure capacity building of the ultimate users- the farmers in terms of physical, financial and skill resources base by way of adequate financial support channelized through credit institutions, private investments and training for skill up gradation. 
  • Facilitate farmers' organization to take lead role on mobilizing support services and resources. 
  • Facilitate private investments for infrastructure development, private institutions have to take lead in the delivery of goods and services to ultimate users (farmers). 
  • Facilitate the processing and marketing activities of the agricultural, livestock, dairy, poultry, silk and allied produce of the farmers with the help of private sector institutions. 
  • Receive and expend project funds, maintain revolving accounts, enter into contracts and agreements, receive donations and provide services & deliver goods to beneficiaries. 
  • Accept grants of money, securities or property of any kind and undertake and accept the management of any endowment, trust funds or donations not inconsistent with the objectives of the ATMA, on such terms and conditions as may be fitted with the objectives of the ATMA and be prescribed by the Government of India from time to time. 
  • Generate resource in order to bring financial sustainability through charging for selected services rendered to beneficiaries by ATMA. 
  • Create administrative, technical, ministerial and other posts in the ATMA and make appointments thereto in accordance with the rules and regulations of the State Government. 
  • Make rules and bye-laws for the conduct of the affairs of the ATMA and add to amend vary or rescind them from time to time. 
  • Do all such other lawful acts and things either alone or in conjunction with other organizations or persons as the ATMA may consider necessary, incidental or conductive to the attainment of the above objectives. 
  • To do all such lawful acts and things whether incidental to objectives in force or not as may be requisite in order to furtherance of the objectives of the ATMA. 
  • Sell, lease, exchange and otherwise transfer of any portion and the properties of the society (ATMA). 
  • Do all other such things as may be considered by the society (ATMA) and maybe incidental or conducive to the attainment of its objectives . 


Other Rural Development Programmes 

Rural Employment 

Unemployment as well as underemployment kills the skills and its effect is more perceptible in rural areas compared to urban localities. Providing additional employment opportunities in rural areas invariably is an in built component of all the rural development programmes. The Government of India has taken up various employment generation schemes to alleviate poverty in rural areas. These schemes include Rural manpower programme, Crash scheme for Rural Employment, Pilot Intensive Rural Employment programme, Food for Work Programme, National Rural Employment Programme (NREP) and Rural Landless Employment Guarantee Programme (RLEGP). In April, 1989 the two on-going employment programmes RLEGP and NREP were merged into a single rural employment programme and is named as Jawahar Rozgar Yojana which was latter restructured and streamlined and renamed as Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY). This Yojana was launched on 1 April, 1999 with a twofold objective of creating village infrastructure including durable assets and generation of supplementary employment for the unemployed poor in the rural areas. 

Funds are allocated to the states on the basis of incidence of poverty. Within the states the allocation is done on the basis of SC/ST rural population. The villages Panchayats are empowered to choose the work on the basis of felt needs of the people. However, preference is given to works, which create economically productive assets. DRDA/ Zila Parishads will release the funds to village panchayats for implementation of the projects at village level.

Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS) 

This scheme came into operation on 2nd October, 1993 and it is being implemented in all the rural blocks of the country. The main objective of the scheme is to provide assured employment of 100 days of unskilled manual work to the rural poor who are in need of it. The scheme is open to all men and women in the age group of 18 - 60 years in rural areas. The expenditure under this scheme is shared by Centre and States in the proportion of 75 : 25 respectively. The central assistance is released directly to the DRDA or Zila Parishad and the District Collector or the Deputy Commissioner is the implementing authority of the scheme. 

Drought Prone Area Programme (DPAP) 

The Drought Prone Area Programme was started in 1973 with a view to minimize the adverse effects of drought on production of crops and livestock and productivity of land, water and human resources through integrated development of the natural resources. The other objectives include conservation and development of natural resources and ultimately to improve the socio economic condition of the resource poor and disadvantaged sections of the society. 

The programme is under implementation in 946 blocks of 149 districts in 13 states. The funds of this programme are shared by the Centre and the concerned State on 50 : 50 basis. 

Desert Development programme (DDP) 

The DDP was started in the year 1977-78 in the hot deserts of Rajasthan, Gujarat and Haryana, and the cold deserts of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. It aims at capacity building and empowerment of village community. Since, 1995-96, a new approach was adopted based on watershed development and under this programme a large area of land was brought under afforestation and pasture development. 

The Integrated Wastelands Development Programme (IWDP) 

The programme was started in the year 1989-90. This is being implemented from 1 st April 1995 onwards on watershed basis under Watershed Development. The Scheme is being implemented through ICAR, State Agricultural Universities (SAUs), Government and private institutions having adequate infrastructure facilities. This project is being implemented in 25 states of India covering an area of 2.96 lakh hectares by May, 2000. 

Technology Development, Extension and Training Scheme (TDET) 

This scheme was launched in 1993-94 to develop suitable technologies for the reclamation of wastelands for sustained production of food, fuel-wood, fodder etc. It is being implemented by ICAR, SAUs, DRDAs and Government institutions having adequate institutional framework and organizational back up. 

Council for Advancement of People’s Action and Rural Technology (CAPART) 

CAPART is a registered society and operating from September, 1986 with New Delhi as its Headquarters. It aims at encouraging, promoting and assisting voluntary action for enhancement of rural prosperity by providing financial assistance to voluntary organizations. It is formed by merging two autonomous bodies Peoples’ Action for Development India (PADI) and Council for Advancement of Rural Technology (CART). The schemes covered by CAPART for rendering financial assistance include DWCRA, IRDP, organization of beneficiaries of anti poverty programme, Jawahar Rozgar Yojana and Advancement of Rural Technology Schemes. 

CAPART has recently established nine regional committees at Ahmedabad, Bhubaneswar, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Patna, Chandigarh, Dharwad and Lucknow which are empowered to consider, sanction and monitor projects up to an outlay of Rs.10 lakhs. 

National Agricultural Extension Project (NAEP) 

It was launched in 1983. The objective of NAEP was to bridge the gap between research and extension systems, so that the transfer of technology can take place at a much faster rate, resulting in higher production.


National Agriculture Dev. Programme (NADP) or Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) 

Concerned by the slow growth in the Agriculture and allied sectors, the National Development Council (NDC), resolved in 2007 that a special Additional Central Assistance Scheme (RKVY) be launched. The NDC resolved that agricultural development strategies must be reoriented to meet the needs of farmers and called upon the Central and State governments to evolve a strategy to rejuvenate agriculture. The NDC reaffirmed its commitment to achieve four percent annual growth in the agricultural sector during the XI Plan. 

Basic Features of the RKVY 

The RKVY aims at achieving 4% annual growth in the Agriculture sector during the XI Plan period, by ensuring a holistic development of Agriculture and allied sectors. The main objectives of the scheme are to: 

  • incentivise the states so as to increase public investment in Agriculture and allied sectors; 
  • provide flexibility and autonomy to states in the process of planning and executing agriculture and allied sectors schemes; 
  • ensure the preparation of Agriculture plans of the districts and the states based on Agro-Climate conditions, availability of technology and natural resources; 
  • ensure that the local needs/crops/priorities are better reflected in the Agricultural plans of the states; 
  • achieve the goal of reducing the yield gaps in important crops, through focused interventions;
  • maximize returns to the farmers in Agriculture and allied sectors; 
  • bring about quantifiable changes in the production and productivity of various components of Agriculture and allied sectors by addressing them in a holistic manner; 

These guidelines are applicable to all the states and Union Territories that fulfill the eligibility conditions. 

SREP (Strategic Research and Extension Plan) 

It is the process of finding the best scenario for agricultural development and setting the best path to reach that destination by rigorous analysis and choices about goals, opportunities and threats, strengths and weaknesses with respect to agricultural development in a district. 

  • Goals-what is intended to be accomplished? 
  • Opportunities and threats- what is needed and feasible? 
  • Strengths and weaknesses-what is the capability of doing things? 

SREP document provides the details of problems and technological needs for agricultural development in a district. Basic aim of SREP is to link the research and extension system with the farmers. It is a bottom up approach exercise carried out at the district level to identify the technological and training needs of the farmers. It speaks about extension and research priorities to be undertaken by the extension and research system based on the grass root analysis carried out by the SREP team. It is a comprehensive document prepared for the purpose of understanding the district agricultural scenario and to undertake need based research and extension programmes. 

While the farmers require a wider range of support to address the emerging challenges, extension mainly functions as an agency for technology dissemination. Market extension has been a recent addition but it is understood and implemented mostly as provision of output price information in various markets and this is highly inadequate to address the challenges in marketing. Other extension support facilities created in the country include, farmer training centres at the district level; SAMETI (State Agricultural Management Extension and Training Institute) at the state level; EEI (Extension Education Institute) at the regional level; and MANAGE (National Institute for Agricultural Extension Management) at the national level.

First Line Extension Programmes of ICAR 

The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) is the apex body in India, which is entrusted with the responsibility of providing guidance and leadership in agricultural research, education and extension. The mandate includes promotion of transfer of technology programmes. A post of Deputy Director General (Agricultural Extension) is created at ICAR who is responsible for assessment, refinement and transfer of agricultural technologies, which includes crop, livestock and fisheries. 

The involvement of ICAR in extension started with the formulation and implementation of several front line extension programmes such as National Demonstration (1965), Operational Research Project (1972), Krishi Vigyan Kendra (1974), Lab to Land Programme (1979), Frontline Demonstrations and Technology Assessment and Refinement (TAR) - Institution Village Linkage Programme (IVLP). National Agricultural Technology Project (NATP), Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA), National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP) and Horticultural Mission. The frontline extension programmes of ICAR were designed to organize the demonstrations by scientists to show the production potentiality of modern agricultural technologies to identify its location specificity in the farmers’ field. 

National Demonstration Project (NDP) 

National Demonstration Project (NDP) was implemented during the year 1965 to demonstrate the production potentialities of technology package on major crops to fully exploit these demonstrations for the purpose of training the farmers’ and extension workers. Further, it provided the scientists feedback of the problems faced by the farmers with respect to adoption of new technologies. 

Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) 

The ICAR has established KVKs in the country in the year 1976 - 77 with an objective of imparting learning through work experience. It also aims at imparting training to extension workers who are already employed and to practicing farmers and fishermen who wish to be self-employed. 

The main characteristic feature of KVK is that there is non-uniform syllabus for the Kendras. Each Kendra has to prepare its syllabus and programmes in tune with the felt needs, natural resources and the potential for agricultural growth in that particular area. The responsibility of operating the KVKs is entrusted to

  1. Agricultural Universities and ICAR institutes 
  2. Voluntary agencies with a good record of serving rural communities especially in backward areas, tribal and hilly areas. 
  3. Institutes of Science and Technology and 
  4. State Government agencies, in case the above organizations are not available. 

Initially 18 KVKs were established with a budget of Rs.10 lakhs to each KVK. The first KVK was established in Pondichery in the year 1974. Later efforts were made to establish KVK in each State and now it is completed to have one KVK in each district. At present there are 721 KVKs functioning in the country.


The mandate of KVK was also modified to suit to the changing situations. The mandate of KVK at present includes 

  1. On-farm testing, refining and documenting of technologies in collaboration with the researchers and extension personnel 
  2. Organizing training for extension personnel to update their knowledge and skills in advances in agricultural research. 
  3. Organizing long term vocational training courses for the rural youths with emphasis on learning by doing for generating self-employment through institutional financing. 
  4. Organizing front line demonstrations in various crops to generate production data and feedback information.


To promptly demonstrate the latest agricultural technologies to the farmers as well as extension workers of the State Department of Agriculture/Horticulture, Animal science, with view to reduce the gap between the technology generation and its adoption. 

  • To test and verify the technologies in the socio-economic conditions of the farmers with a view to study the production constraints and to modify the technologies to make them appropriate. 
  •  To impart training to the practicing farmers/farm-women, rural youths and field level extension functionaries by following the method of “Teaching by doing” and “Learning by Doing”. 
  • To back up with training and communication support to the district level development departments in their extension programme. 
  • To develop extension models to be adopted by general extension system for large scale multiplication . 
  • To get first hand scientific feedback from the fields and passing it to the research system in order to keep the scientists abreast (to informed) with the performance of the technologies and the farming problems. 
  • To bring about improvement in agricultural mechanization in the area through entrepreneurship development in agriculture and related aspects and to improve the socio-economic status of the farming community through transfer of economically viable and environmentally sound technologies on various aspects such as crop production, mechanization, horticulture, animal husbandry and women in agriculture.

Trainers’ Training Centres (TTC) 

The ICAR has established Trainers’ Training Centres in different parts of the country to provide specialized training to the teachers of the KVKs and also to those in - service teachers and staff who are involved in vocational agriculture in different institutions. The objectives of TTCs are 

  • to impart training to the teachers of KVK in agricultural technology as well as in pedagogy. 
  • to train teachers who are likely to be engaged in teaching in agriculture at high school level. 
  • to train the trainers of Gramsevika/Gram Sewak Extension Training Centres of the region. 
  • to organize vocational training programmes in agriculture technologies and home economics . 

There are eight TTCs functioning in the country to provide technical support and update the skill of the staff of KVKs and subject matter specialists in their areas of specialization as well as latest training methodology. 

Frontline Demonstrations (FLD) 

“Seeing is believing” is the main principle behind the demonstrations. Earlier demonstrations were being organized in the research stations/farms, which came under criticism because the research farm situation cannot be compared to the farmer’s field. This criticism could be avoided by conducting demonstrations on farmers’ fields, which automatically provide opportunity for the researchers, extension personnel and the farmers to evaluate the technologies. With this intention the ICAR laid emphasis on front line demonstrations with the following

objectives of FLD

  • to demonstrate the newly released production technologies on the farmers’ fields 
  • to exploit their maximum potential in a given farming system. 
  • to prepare technical leadership in the villages by imparting desired training and 
  • to organize the need based training programmes for subject matter specialists and farmers, after identification of problems. 

About 54,000 front line demonstrations were organized to demonstrate the production potential of newly released production technologies in 2009. 

Operational Research Project (ORP) 

Operational Research Project (ORP) was initiated in 1975 to identify technological as well as socio-economic constraints and to formulate and implement a combination of technology modules on area/watershed/target group basis. The performance of the new technology is to be tested on farmers’ fields at operational level under the existing resources and socio-economic and cultural conditions to address the common agricultural problems affecting the existing farm production system on community basis. 

Lab to Land programme (LLP) 

Lab to Land programme (LLP) was implemented in 1979, by ICAR as a part of its Golden Jubilee celebrations. The aim of the programme is to assist the selected farm families for improving their farming systems and thereby generating more employment and income. The basic idea is to bring the scientists and farmers into a common forum and to introduce appropriate technologies facilitating the diversification of labour-use and creating supplementary sources of income in the fields of agriculture and allied enterprises. 

Directorate of Research on Women in Agriculture 

Realizing the role of women in agriculture and allied activities the ICAR has established a Directorate of Research for Women in Agriculture in 1996. The important Objectives of this centre are: o acting as a repository of information relevant to women in agriculture, 

  • o strengthening the use of gender analysis in research and technology development to ensure that women’s as well as men’s agricultural enterprises and operations are fully considered for defining research programmes and setting priorities,
  • o collaborating in women’s specific research, education and technology assessment and refinement with relevant national and international organizations, 
  •  o conducting training and developing training modules and manuals for sensitizing gender related issues in research/ programme/policy developments, 
  • o developing and testing women - specific models and manuals for technology transfer.

Technology Assessment & Refinement (TAR)- Institution Village Linkage Prog. (IVLP). 

In 1995, the ICAR launched this innovative programme and the objectives are to: 

introduce technological interventions with emphasis on stability and sustainability along with productivity of small-farm production systems; 

introduce and integrate the appropriate technologies to sustain technological interventions and their integration to maintain productivity and profitability taking environmental issues into consideration in a comparatively well defined farm production system; 

introduce and integrate the appropriate technologies to increase the agricultural productivity with marketable surplus in commercial on and off farm production system; 

Facilitate adoption of appropriate post harvest technologies for conservation and on-farm value addition of agricultural products, by-products and waste for greater economic dividend and national priorities; 

facilitate adoption of appropriate technologies for removal of drudgery, increased efficiency and higher income of farm women; 

monitor socio-economic impact of the technological intervention for different farm production systems; 

identify extrapolation domains for new technology/technology modules based on environmental characterization at meso and mega level. 

National Agricultural Technology Project: (NATP) 

The National Agricultural Technology Project was launched by the “Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) on June 30, 1998, with the support of the World Bank, to strengthen and complement the existing resources and to augment the output of the National Agricultural Research System (NARS). The NATP implemented its objectives through Strategies for Organization and Management Reforms and Research. The Research comprised various modes of objective-based funding, namely, Teams of Excellence (ToE), Mission Mode (MM), Production Systems Research (PSR), Institution Village Linking Programme (IVLP) and Competitive Grants Programme (CGP). Another important component which was funded under NATP was Innovations in Technology Disseminations (ITD). Projects under ITD were executed by the Department of Agriculture and Co-operation (DAC), Government of India, and the ICAR. Production Systems Research (PSR) mode of funding divided Agro-ecological-Zones into five sub-modes, namely, Rain fed, Irrigated, Arid, Coastal, and Hill & Mountain. All five sub-modes were recognized as respective Agro-ecosystem Directorates and were empowered to source funds and administer & monitor the progress of the projects. 

NATP Glimpses: NATP was the world's biggest World Bank assisted agriculture project worth Rs. 992 crores developed and executed by NARS. NATP lifespan was seven years, from 1998 to 2005. NATP was the first project in NARS to shift the focus from discipline oriented research to production system research. NATP was the first project in NARS to involve competitive funding, & have pluralistic approach to involve and fund partners from outside NARS. NATP successfully completed a whopping total of 852 projects.

National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP) 

The National Agricultural Innovation Project was launched in the year 2007 by ICAR. The overall objective of NAIP is to facilitate the accelerated and sustainable transformation of Indian agriculture in support of poverty alleviation and income generation through collaborative development and application of agricultural innovations by the public organizations in partnership with farmers groups, the private sector and other stakeholders. The specific objectives are to: 

  • build the critical capacity of the ICAR as a catalyzing agent for management of change of the Indian NARS, 
  • promote production to consumption systems research in priority areas/themes to enhance productivity, nutrition, profitability, income and employment, 
  • improve livelihood security of rural people living in selected disadvantaged regions through innovation systems led by technology and encompassing the wider process of social and economic change covering all stakeholders , and 
  • build capacity and undertake basic and strategic research in strategic areas to meet technology development challenges in the immediate and predictable future.

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Transfer of Technology Projects of ICAR or Integrated Rural Development Programme.