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National Agriculture Technology Project (NATP)

National Agriculture Technology Programme (NATP)

After the WTO, there was rapid global change in agricultural trade. There are emerging needs to radically reform the extension system to meet the challenges of rural development.Therefore, National Agriculture Technology programme was conceived as a pilot project. It was launched in November, 1998. It was an initiation of government of India with World Bank Assistance. Its purpose was to make the extension serious broad based, holistic beyond agriculture technology transfer besides to consolidate earlier, weakness and gaps.

Objectives -                 

The overall objective of NATP was to revitalize the agriculture technology generation assessment, refinement and dissemination systems. It had there components, there were: -

  • ICAR organization and management reforms
  • Expansion of location specific research on production system and.
  • Testing of innovations in technology dissemination.

The innovation in technology dissemination (ITD) component of the project aimed at addressing key constraints in technology generation, validation and dissemination by introducing new institutional models and operational reform process in selected states. The states were namely Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Orissa and Punjab. The project was pilot tested in four districts of above mentioned each states.

Under NATP, Some institutional innovations were made in each project district. These were as follows:

  • Establishment of decentralized district level autonomous institution named ATMA ( Agricultural technology management agency )
  • Establishing FAIC (Farm Information and Advisory Centre at block level).
  • Establishment of state level agricultural extension management training institutions named SAMETI (State Agricultural Extension management and training institutes).
  • Evolutions of state levels coordination and policy making body named IDWG ( Inter Department Working Group )

With an objective to address the expanding role of extension certain operational reforms processes were initiated in the project districts like strategic planning, bottom up planning, promotion of farmers' interest group and farmers. Organization, farming system approach decentralized decision making farmer participation research market led production sequential extension interventions, cost and resource sharing IT and communication support, public private partnership, techno managerial focus team approach devitalizing on going schemes and farmers focused and farmers accountable extension based on the performance of the pilot study ATMA model is now introduced in various states of the country with the help of government of India.

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Please note that this is the opinion of the author and is Not Certified by ICAR or any of its authorised agents.