17th November, 2009 is a momentous day for the implementation of the vision of digital Bangladesh concerning the dream of our honorable Prime Minister. For the first time in the history of People’s Republic Bangladesh, farmers are notified no later than the purjee is issued on their name, through SMS based mobile service. The misery the farmers had to endure regarding purjee is a long, known-to-all history. To diminish the sufferings of the farmers Access to Information (A2I) Programme at the Prime Minister's Office along with and funded by Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corporation (BSFIC) under the Ministry of Industries and UNDP, started the pilot project of e-purjee at the Faridpur and Moarakganj Sugar Mills.
Long before the time of independence, the purjee system was introduced and since then the authority in charge of the sugar mills have been issuing a hand-written purjee to facilitate buying the sugarcanes from the farmers. The purjee contains the basic information of the sugarcane growers’ e.g. name, address, passbook no, name of the unit and center, date of the delivery and the amount of the sugarcanes. This sullied system caused many troubles to the sugarcane growers. For instance, the purjee does not reach to the farmers in time, none of the important information can be sent to the farmers and so forth. Thus as the farmers are affected, the sugar mill corporation also faces problems as the expected sugarcanes do not reach to them in time as well. The relationship of the sugar mill corporation with the farmers is complementary, as sugarcane is such a worthy crop that the sugar mill corporation is bound to purchase them in the decided price of the Govt. Moreover, if the farmer is a listed one, he is assured to have the loan without any interest and also he is given fertilizers, irrigating elements, pesticides, productive seedlings etc. therefore, any problem of the sugarcane growers is eventually a problem of the nation's sugar industries.
With the vision of a developed and prosperous nation, the Govt. has been taking various initiatives in the field of agriculture, education, healthcare, administration and so on. In continuation to this, the Prime Minister's Office assigned different Secretaries to mark a 'quick win' e-service/ project each which could be implicated within a year. The Chief Minister of the Ministry of Industries selected the SMS based digital purjee service as a quick win. Since then, after various meeting and assessment gazing at the possibilities of success, the pilot project of e-purjee service was implicated in the Faridpur and Mobarkganj sugar mills. After the enormous success of the pilot project, accoding to the instruction of the honorable Prime Minister, in the crushing season i.e. October of this year, the e-purjee service has been implicated in the rest of the thirteen sugar mills (Panchagar, Thakurgan, Shetabganj, Shampur, Rangpur, Jaypurhat, Jillbangla, Rajshahi, Nator, North Bengal, Kushtia, Keru & Co. and Pabna sugar mill).
Important Milestones of the e-purjee project:
- August, 2008 - Idea sharing and Project Data Sheet (PDS) preparation
- October, 2008 - MOU signing for Piloting at two sugar mills
- July, 2009 - Field level workshops and exchange views with stakeholder
- June to August, 2009 - Growers data collection
- July to Sep, 2009 - Software requirement study, analysis, design, development, testing and installation
- Sep, 2009 - Field level trainers team formation for growers training (Service recipient)
- Sep to Oct, 2009 - Training for the Trainers Teams (TOT)
- Oct, 2009 - Conducting growers meeting at each center by the Teams
- Sep to Oct, 2009 - Training to the system user and data entry operators at Sugar Mill end.
- Sep to Oct, 2009 - Growers Data entry
- November to January, 2010 - Starting project operation and running till end of the crashing season
- March, 2010 - Impact analysis
- June, 2010 - Govt. (BSFIC) ownership and up scaling decision
- July to Present Date - Implementation of the same system at all Sugar Mills in Bangladesh by BSFIC