Encouraging Wider Geospatial Innovation through the AGI India Awards

Over the last few years, India has seen a continuous digital revolution across all economic sectors, opening up additional opportunities for new technologies and tools, as well as their rapid adoption and deployment. The impact of Geospatial technologies on Indian economic growth is now more obvious than ever, and it can be seen in every major sector.

And yet, there is still evident lack of awareness of the massive potential and expanding importance of this spectrum of technology in our country. The role of Geospatial as a key enabler to economic prowess is understood by those who are using it for driving tangible social and economic outcomes, but this needs to expand further. Celebrating such exemplary work and presenting them as best practices before their respective verticals can truly enable wider adoption of innovative Geospatial technologies in the mainstream.

The AGI India Awards: Another Step Towards Industry Development & Support

The Association of Geospatial Industries announced the AGI India Awards on the sidelines of the ‘India Geospatial Leadership Summit (IGLS) 2022’ held in New Delhi on 25-26 April 2022. AGI India received 34 nominations from various central and state government agencies, Geospatial private sector companies, and academia under various categories and covering different fields and perspectives.

These nominations were evaluated based on the size of the project, innovative use of Geospatial Technologies, the impact of the project, and its outcomes. The idea was to foster pioneering use of Geospatial data and technologies by varied industries, thus showcasing these precedents before myriad verticals and organizations.

AGI India Award Winners: A Sneak Peek

A Much-Needed Land Reform: The DILRMP

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Land Administration was conferred to the Unique Land Parcel Identification Number (ULPIN) and Integrated Land Information Management System (ILIMS) under the Digital India Land Records Modernization Programme (DILRMP) by the Department of Land Resources, Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India.

Salient Features of the Project

  • Generation of new land records and updation of existing ones mirroring the ground reality,
  • Improvement in real-time land information
  • Optimization of resources
  • Assistance in policy & planning
  • Substantial reduction in land disputes
  • More accountability in land governance
  • Greater accuracy in survey/resurvey works
  • Cost and time savings, and
  • More efficient workflows.

 

Technologies used:

Remote Sensing, Satellite Imagery, Surveying & Mapping, Positioning Technology, Hybrid Aerial Photography with Ground Truthing, and GIS.

Rejuvenating the Riverine Ecosystem: The Namami Gange Programme

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Water Resources was conferred to the Namami Gange programme, guided by the National Mission for Clean Ganga’s holistic approach. The project’s focus was on components such as pollution abatement, solid and liquid waste management, biodiversity, afforestation, wetland conservation, agribusiness, groundwater management, and so on.  

Salient Features of the Project

  • Four pillars of intervention identified and implemented for restoration, conservation, and rejuvenation of River Ganga:
    • Nirmal Ganga – Unpolluted Flow
    • Aviral Ganga – Unrestricted Flow
    • Jan Ganga – People River Connect
    • Gyan Ganga – Research and Knowledge Management
  • River pollution monitored
  • Policy development research conducted
  • Effective Water resource and basin management
  • Data-driven spatial planning
  • Mapping of river corridors, water bodies, biodiversity and resources, aquifers, climate scenarios, and spring rejuvenation

Technologies used:

LiDAR, GIS, positioning, and drones

Empowering Digital India: The National Image Web Service & Bharat Maps

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Mapping for Development was conferred to the National Informatics Centre (NIC). Bharat Maps supports the Indian government’s Digital India initiative that is transforming India into a digitally empowered society. A multi-layer integrated GIS Platform was created to provide seamless access to data as a service for various Mission Mode projects and e-gov divisions of NIC at the Central and State level.

 

Salient Features of the Project

·         1:50,000 scale reference data from Survey of India, ISRO, FSI, RGI, and others, comprising 23 layers of spatial information

·         Resource optimization

·         Workflow improvement

·         Cost and time savings

 

Technologies used:

 

Remote Sensing, Satellite Imagery, GIS

Simplified Crime Analysis: The UP CCTNS Project

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Defence & Internal Security was conferred to the Uttar Pradesh Police Technical Services. With an aim to facilitate the mapping of various types of crime data for both citizen and departmental access, the UP Police Technical Services undertook the comprehensive CCTNS project.

 

Salient Features of the Project

·         State-of-the-art mobile application developed

·         Simplified analysis of crimes across zones

·         Effective planning of countermeasures

·         Nearest police officials automatically detected during any incident, along with relaying the frequency at which they can reach the crime spot

·         All rungs of the police system, up to the DG level, can access crime-related insights and analytics with a single click

 

Technologies used:

 

GIS, positioning 

Speedy Crop Insurance to Farmers: PM Fasal Bima Yojana Implementation

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Agriculture was conferred to the the Agriculture Insurnace Company of India Limited. AICIL implemented the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana: Crop Insurance – an integrated IT solution and a web-based ecosystem to provide speedy insurance services to farmers. It thus helped facilitate in compensation of farmers for damages to their crops.

Salient Features of the Project

  • Automated analytics of crop health, density, acreage, and condition
  • Accurate change detection, classification, watershed, planting, and irrigation
  • On-the-fly heat/density and spatial interpolation on existing geotagged information
  • Timely claim settlement and insurance for farmers
  • Development of digital records of crop acreage, yield, classification, and growth

Technologies used:

GIS, Remote Sensing

Effective Urban Management: The GIS Singularity Project

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Urban Management was conferred to the Punjab Municipal Infrastructure Development Company (PMIDC). The Integrated Command and Control Centre (ICCC) at PMIDC is the GIS backbone based on which multiple ground-breaking e-Governance interventions have been designed. A layer of intelligent AI/ML analytics is built to enable the usage of select data points for effective decision-making resulting in significant benefits

Salient Features of the Project

  • Data from Management Information Systems integrated with traditional geospatial techniques
  • Select data points used for effective decision-making
  • Increased revenues from property tax witnessed
  • Efficient COVID-19 management
  • AMRUT cities water network management made possible
  • Slum proprietary rights acknowledged with Basera.

Technologies used:

Surveying and Mapping, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), 3D Mapping, Location or Positioning Technologies, and drone survey.

Early Warning Mechanism for Concerning Areas: Forest Fire Monitoring & Analysis

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Urban Management was conferred to the Karnataka State Remote Sensing Applications Centre (KSRSAC) for detecting a total of 3,98,774 forest fires since November 2020 using Geospatial technologies. 

Salient Features of the Project

  • Better prevention and management of forest fires
  • Creation of a dynamic information system including early warning mechanism for fire-prone areas
  • Monitoring fires on a real-time basis
  • Estimating burn scars
  • Aiding active fire mitigation efforts in lesser time
  • Monitoring regrowth patterns

Technologies used:

Remote sensing sensors, GIS.

Large Scale Mapping of Resources: MahaBHUMI

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Urban Management was conferred to the Maharashtra State Remote Sensing Centre for MahaBHUMI, a large-scale mapping project for the entire state.

Salient Features of the Project

  • Digital elevation model and ortho mosaic generation
  • Mapping of various resources
  • Laying the foundation for the Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) and decision support system for the state of Maharashtra

Technologies used:

Photogrammetry, DGPS.

On the Way to Complete Workflow Analysis: NHAI Construction & Assets Monitoring

The AGI India Award for Excellence in Infrastructure Development was conferred to the National Highways Authority of India. As a robust solution for monitoring its construction projects, operations, and various assets, NHAI deployed various Geospatial tools and technologies to cover its highways and toll plazas. This data was interlaced with timestamps, geographic coordinates, structural information, and dynamic chainage and monitored at monthly intervals to check their alignment with various NHAI Guidelines.   

Salient Features of the Project

  • Encroachments, land issues, blackspots, and hindrances identified
  • Geo-tagged details to be uploaded to the Data Lake Portal
  • Complete project workflows, identifying discrepancies, determining budgetary allocations, and ensuring dispute resolutions are in the pipeline

Technologies used:

Aerial mapping & videography, photogrammetric ortho imaging, land audits, and 3D land mapping using drones.

Conclusion

Projects such as the above truly unveil the many benefits of using Geospatial technologies for comprehensive collection, analysis, and utilization of various types of data for effective decision-making, no matter what the location, industry, or scale. India’s ambitious vision of becoming a $5 trillion economy by 2024 too hinges on the pivot of modern Geospatial technology, for it helps derive orderly data out of chaotic information, and to further work using this data for analytics, modelling, and predictions.

 

In the words of Mr. Agendra Kumar, Former President of the Association of Geospatial Industries, “Geospatial technologies and content provide analytics and insights required for informed decision-making, implementation, and monitoring of government programs. Various economic sectors are using Geospatial intelligence to understand ‘where’ is the effort required, ‘how’ resources are being used, ‘when’ changes occur, and ‘what’ impacts they produce.” The remarkable efforts of all award winners are testimony to this vision, playing a key role in driving the nation’s economic growth on the pillars of innovation and sustainability.