The Earth System Science Organization (ESSO) of India Meteorological Department (IMD) provides weather information to the farmers through Gramin Krishi Mausam Sewa (GKMS) twice a week. The service is provided in association with State Agricultural Universities (SAUs), institutions of Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), IITs among other institutes.
Giving this information in Rajya Sabha, today the Union Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that district level weather forecast for next 5-days is provided to farmers in respect of rainfall; maximum temperature, minimum temperature; wind speed, wind direction; relative humidity and clouds and weekly cumulative rainfall forecast.
The GKMS of ESSO-IMD has been successful in providing the crop specific advisories to the farmers through different print/visual/Radio/ IT based media including short message service (SMS) and Interactive Voice Response Service (IVRS) facilitating for appropriate field level actions. Weather forecast based agro-meteorological advisories are disseminated through Kisan Portal launched by the Ministry of Agriculture and also under public private partnership. At present, the GKMS products are disseminated through SMS and IVRS to 11.5 million farmers in India.
The SMS services are meant for any farmer across the country who registers in Kisan portal or through the designated SMS service providers under public private partnership (PPP) mode.
ESSO-IMD has also launched an SMS-based alert system for general public for dissemination of weather and disaster-related — cyclone, severe weather storms, heavy rains — information. Under this round-the-clock web-based operational system, the ESSO-IMD sends SMS to individuals who registers themselves at the weather forecaster’s official website for this purpose. Besides giving information about natural calamities, the system also suggests what action needs to be taken.
ESSO-IMD had a mobile application for Android based smart phone and tablets. The mobile application, Indian Weather is downloadable from Google play store, free of cost. Presently, the app provides current weather and 4 days weather forecast across the country for 310 cities. The mobile app will also be hosted for free download from the government mobile appstore very soon.