The Kerala government is gearing up to geotag the houses and farms of over 10 lakh livestock and poultry farmers in the state as part of its massive digitisation drive. The objective is to compile a comprehensive digital repository of the information of animal husbandry and dairying in the state and integrate the data using the Geographical Information System (GIS), official sources said. The state Animal Husbandry Department has a database of over eight lakh farmers and houses and farms of over 60,000 of them have already been geotagged under the ambitious initiative. It also plans to make the functioning of the Department ‘paperless’ in the next 6-7 months as part of the digitisation drive, for which 23 mobile applications will be developed, official sources said. Besides the data of the houses and farms, the status of domestic animals and birds, the information of veterinary hospitals and related offices would also be linked through the GIS technology.
Through the geo-tagging, the location of the complete livestock population in the southern state would also be mapped subsequently, a top official said. “The government can use the data as an authentic support system during the time of financial planning,”state Animal Husbandry Director N N Sasi told PTI. The data would be useful during the time of the outbreak of any diseases among domestic animals and birds, he said. “Besides this, the complete details of the farmer, including his/her name, address, photo, Aadhar and mobile numbers, the number of cattle they rear, its varieties and all such other things will be available,” he said. The data would not be made public domain. It would be used only for internal planning and review purposes of various programmes of the department, the official said.
The department has already ‘ear-tagged’ (the process of clipping a tag on the ear to identify vaccinated animals) over 11 lakh cattle, including cows and buffaloes in Kerala. Both the information of the ear-tagged animals and those of the geo-tagged farmers would be kept in the state data centre here, he said. The programme is envisaged in such a way that the details of vaccination of each cattle, diseases if it suffer any, medicines prescribed to it and the name of veterinarians who treated it would be available.
Even the very basic information, including the number of those having cattle sheds and its hygiene status could also be tracked using the data, the official said. The state-wide programme is implemented with the support of veterinarians and livestock inspectors who would collect the information of their respective areas and upload in their digital gadgets. “The department has already placed orders for 2,500 tabs to be distributed among veterinarians and livestock inspectors for the purpose. Besides this, SIM cards will also be given for connectivity,” Sasi said.
With the completion of the initiative,the entire data and activities related to animal husbandry and dairying could be monitored from the Secretariat, the administrative hub here, the official added. According to the 19th Livestock census, 2012, the livestock population in Kerala is 27.35 lakh. The poultry population is 242.82 lakh, it said.