Priyanka Barman is just 19. Her grit and determination belie her age. Although she could not continue her studies beyond matriculation for lack of resources, she never tempered her dreams of flying high. The curiosity in her helped Priyanka to spot an opportunity when she learnt of a drone training programme in a polytechnic in Nalbari.
Hailing from the remote Madhupur village under Banekuchi subdivision of the district, she joined Pragati SHG one-and-a-half years back to become self-reliant and to support her vegetable vendor father, “As a SHG member, it was the first training which I attended,” she told Asom Barta.
Priyanka considers herself lucky to be able to the training, “It was a great opportunity for me. In the six days of the workshop, we learnt drone operation, their rules and regulations, safety, usage and servicing,” she told this reporter.
“The workshop has boosted my confidence. I am now keen to learn more about these drones and use them for a living.”
Meanwhile, 27-year-old Rinku Moni Begum travelled up to four hours everyday to be part of the same training. Narrating her experience, Rinku, a member of Tammana SHG said, “Six days of the workshop was like a dream. An ocean of learning. At first, I was a bit sceptical about joining the course thinking it would be difficult since I have never ever seen a drone. I think it was a good decision to join the workshop.”
She said that they had detailed training on taking care of agricultural fields using drones. “The technical knowledge from the workshop will help us in enhancing the productivity of the agricultural land,” she told this newsletter.
To make India a women-led country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi. during his speech on Independence Day this year, announced a new scheme- ‘Lakhpati Didi’ and envisioned providing drone flying and repairing training for women in SHGs to empower rural women through modern technology.
The short-term gender specific programme was conducted by Assam State Rural Livelihood Mission (ASRLM) in association with the district administration.
Sumit Krishnan, the instructor, appreciated the willinness of the group to learn a new technology.