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Sowing the ‘AI’ seed for intelligent farming”

GS Paper 3

Syllabus: E-technology in the aid of farmers.


Source: Times of India, Live Mint

Context: 2-3 different articles came in the different newspapers about the same theme of AI, we have combined all of them.

Direction: AI is important for both Mains and Prelims. Understand the topic discussed (can make note of a few points)

John McCarthy, the American computer scientist, first introduced the world to the term “artificial intelligence” at the 1955 Dartmouth Conference.


  • According to NITI Aayog, AI has the potential to add $1 trillion to India’s economy by 2035. And, as per some experts and academicians, a significant amount of this would be in the agriculture sector.

Application of the AI in agriculture

  • Efficient and cost-effective resource and yield management in the agricultural sector.
  • Enable Smart Agriculture: It refers to the usage of technologies like the Internet of Things, sensors, location systems, robots and artificial intelligence on your farm.
    • AI, cloud computing, satellite imagery, and advanced analytics, in combination, can create an ecosystem for smart agriculture.
  • Prediction analysis: Will ensure the highest possible yields based on the seasonal forecast models.
  • Address supply-demand mismatch in real-time. For example, a supply-demand engine or predictor that can map supply and demand can reduce this issue significantly.
  • Precision farming by determining whether pesticides and weedicides should be used by detecting and targeting weeds in the identified buffer zone.
    • This can lead to higher yields and reduced use of pesticides and weedicides.
  • Extension services: AI-based natural language translation facilitates the issuance and spread of Agri-advisories, weather forecasts, and early warnings for droughts in multiple vernacular languages.


  • Lack of proper infrastructure and know-how, faith in conventional styles of functioning, lack of awareness and scarcity of farmer capital,
  • Fragmentation of land could also prove to be a hurdle for the large-scale implementation of new technologies.

Measures Taken:

  • ICAR initiatives for cyber agro-physical systemsto make Indian farming a viable, self-sustaining, and internationally competitive enterprise.
  • NITI Aayog identifies agriculture as one of the focus areas as part of its national strategy for AI.


  • Karnatakahas partnered with a leading MNC for agricultural produce, price-related information, and intelligence using predictive modelling
  • Uttar Pradesh is collaborating with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and the Tata Trust to set up the Indian Agritech incubation network at IIT-Kanpur
  • Maharashtra has launched the Maha AgriTech projectthat is aimed at utilizing and promoting the application of satellites and drones to solve various agrarian problems.


It is high time that collaborative Agri-data stacks are created and MSME and large corporations invest in this space. There is a need for the right mix of participation from public and private institutions.

AI in Biology

Context: Alphabet’s Deepmind Technologies recently predicted 3D structures of over 200 million proteins. Generated by its AI system AlphaFold, it aims to help researchers enhance their understanding of how proteins — the building blocks of life — may fold.

Proteins: Human body is estimated to have 20,000 to over 100,000 unique types of proteins within a cell with each having a specific function. These proteins are made up of long chains of 20-22 different types of amino acids linked by peptide (shorter chain of amino acids) bonds. Their order determines how the protein chain will fold upon itself into a 3D structure.

Importance of Folding: Folding lets proteins adopt a functional shape or conformation. If researchers can predict how proteins fold, they can better learn how cells function and how misfolded proteins can cause diseases. AlphaFold uses AI to predict a protein’s 3D structure from its amino acid chain, thereby helping learn how cell functions, and related diseases and accelerating the discovery of drugs.


Responsible AI for youth 2022

Context: Launched by National E-Governance Division (MeIT) and Intel India

Aim: To enable school students (class 8-12) with AI skills in an inclusive manner through exclusive hands-on learning and mentorship opportunities.

Other Initiative:

  • National Program on AI
  • AIRAWAT(Artificial Intelligence Research, Analytics and Knowledge Assimilation Platform)- Cloud computing platform
  • National Strategy for AI
  • Kamakoti Committee: Set up digital data banks, marketplaces and exchanges to ensure the availability of cross-industry information
  • National Artificial Intelligence Mission


Insta Links

Robotics in Agriculture


Mains Links

Q. Artificial Intelligence will revolutionize the farming sector in India. Critically comment. (15M)


Prelims Links

With the present state of development, Artificial Intelligence can effectively do which of the following?

    1. Bring down electricity consumption in industrial units.
    2. Create meaningful short stories and songs.
    3. Disease diagnosis.
    4. Text-to-Speech Conversion.
    5. Wireless transmission of electrical energy.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1, 2, 3 and 5 only

(b) 1, 3 and 4 only

(c) 2, 4 and 5 only

(d) 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

Answer: D