On a very hot Sunday afternoon yesterday, with temperatures reaching the high 90os F (high 30os C), colleagues (Priya Chetri, Srishti Minocha and Anushruti Vagrani) at IIT Delhi kindly took me out into the Haryana countryside where they are conducting a baseline survey on the use of mobile devices by farmers. In the first instance, this is investigating how helpful meteorological forecasts are to the farmers, but in the longer term it is also going to explore how sensors might be able to provide more refined information that would enable farmers to increase yields and thus profitability.
This was a great opportunity to immerse myself once again in the sights, sounds, smells, tastes and touch of the Indian countryside. We spent most of our time talking with farmers in the large village of Alawalpur, but after the interviews were over we were also shown one of the village’s special sites, the Baniewala Mandir. The temple itself was fascinating, but I had never expected to find the 500 cattle that are so well cared for alongside. The freshly made chai massala made from their milk after the interviews were done was absolutely delicious!
I hope that the following pictures reveal something of the adventure. I learnt so much, and am very grateful to Priya, Srishti and Anushruti for taking me there and to Dr. Upasna Sharma for arranging the trip.