Our Staff

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    Dr. Virupakshagouda Patil

    Director, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Dr. Virupakshagouda Patil obtained his B.Sc. (Agri) in 1973, M.Sc. (Agri) in agronomy in 1975, Ph.D. in Agronomy in 1980 with a Gold Medal, from The University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS), Bangalore, Karnataka, India. He went to University of Oxford, United Kingdom, as a Visiting Scientist under the Commonwealth Academic Staff Fellowship during the academic year 1984-85. He has a passion to develop and promote Smart Farming.

    He is currently serving as The Director of K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi. He served as The Chair Professor in Precision Agriculture Research, College of Food and Agriculture Sciences, King Saud University (KSU), Riyadh, Saudi Arabia from 2010-2014. He worked as The Dean of College of Agriculture and Special Officer (Technical) at University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS), Raichur, India (2008-2010). He served UAS, Dharwad, India, in various capacities: The Head of the Division of Plant and Soil Sciences (2006-08); briefly as The Director of Instruction (Post Graduate Studies) in 2008; Professor and Head of the Department of Agronomy (2001-2008); Professor of Agronomy (1994-2001); Associate Professor of Agronomy (1986-1994). He served as Assistant Professor of Agronomy (1982-84), in Hebbal campus and as an Instructor in Agronomy (1980-82) at Dharwad campus of UAS, Bangalore.

    He has mentored and guided 24 M.Sc. (Agri.) and 8 Ph. D students for their degrees in the field of Agronomy. Dr. Patil has implemented 17 externally funded research projects and published 104 research papers in peer reviewed journals. He has published several papers in the area of Precision irrigation, fertigation and water productivity mapping. He is a Fellow of The Indian Society of Agronomy. He has presented 44 papers in International Conferences and 18 papers in National Conferences. He has visited USA, Russia, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Greece, Spain, Singapore, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Morocco, Thailand, and Malaysia, to participate in International Conferences.

    He is the founder President of The Indian Society of Agricultural Information Technology (INSAIT) and Vice president of Institute for Studies on Agriculture and Rural development (ISARD) He served as the President of The Asian Federation for Information Technology in Agriculture (AFITA), Tokyo, Japan, from 2006-2008 and Vice President from 2002 to 2006. He is an Honorary Board member of AFITA. He has organized two International Conferences and five National Conferences.

    He was one of the CO-PIs of the National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP), a Consortium project of The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), led by ICRISAT, with IIT, Mumbai, IIT, Kanpur, IIIT, Trivandrum, NAARM, Hyderabad and G.B. Pant University of Agriculture and Technology, Pantnagar, as collaborating partners. The project “Redesigning the farmer extension-agricultural research/education continuum in India with ICT mediated knowledge management”, won Jury’s award as the Best ICT initiative in Agriculture at the e-India Conference, Hyderabad and e-World Forum conference in New Delhi. The Agropedia and aAqua platforms of the project have played a pivotal role in the dissemination of agricultural knowledge in India.

    As Precision Agriculture Chair Professor in King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, he mobilized funds of One million US Dollars, and established State of the Art facilities for Precision Agriculture Research.

    Recently, a two-year collaborative project titled “Development of methods for in-season monitoring of sugarcane crop in Peninsular India using Earth Observations for precision water and nitrogen management” submitted by KIAAR, was funded by The Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, under India-Russia collaboration.

     
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    Dr. Arati Yadawad

    Plant Scientist, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Dr. Arati Yadawad is a Plant Scientist at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR),Sameerwadi. Arati is specialized in Plant Breeding and Biotechnology and an alumnus of University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad. She is handling Tissue Culture Laboratory, Sugarcane Settling Production and AICRP trials on Sugarcane Improvement. She is involved in all the research activities and trials pertaining to agriculture with special emphasis on Sugarcane Breeding and Biotechnology in addition to productivity and quality improvement of major crops cultivated in the region. Arati assists in the farm management, development and dissemination of novel agricultural technologies for the benefit of farmers and helps with analysis, reporting and event management.

    Dr. Arati joined KIAAR, Sameerwadi in June 2020. Before joining KIAAR, she has served at University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad as a Researcher and Principal Investigator of Women Scientist - A project funded by Department of Science and Technology. On campus, you can find her involved in Plant Breeding and Molecular Biology Research, visiting fields for data collection and advising new agricultural technologies to farmers. She has lot of affinity towards spirituality and enjoys visiting temples, performing prayers, meditation and chanting.

     
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    Dr. Vijaykumar Gangaraddi

    Junior Microbiologist, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Dr. Vijaykumar Gangaraddi is the Junior Microbiologist at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR), Sameerwadi. Dr. Vijaykumar Gangaraddi is the recipient of University Gold Medals for both Masters’ and doctoral studies from the University of Agricultural Sciences, Raichur and University of Agricultural Sciences Bangalore respectively. Dr. Vijaykumar Gangaraddi is specialised in soil microbiology and plant-microbe interactions. He is currently working on the sugarcane microbiome and actively engaged in the production and quality control of biofertilizer.

    Dr. Vijaykumar Gangaraddi joined KIAAR in January 2021. Before joining KIAAR, He worked as Research Associate at UAS Raichur under the project “ Natural Farming” and as an assistant professor of Agricultural Microbiology at K. R. C. College of Horticulture Arabhavi, University of Horticultural Sciences, Bagalkot.

    On-campus, you can find him involved in agricultural microbiology research, visiting fields for rhizosphere soil sample collection and tutoring the farmers about new agricultural technologies. He has lots of interest in travelling and enjoys playing outdoor games like cricket and badminton.

     
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    Mr. Basavaraj Kongawad

    Agronomist, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Mr. Basavaraj Kongawad is an Agronomist at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR), Sameerwadi. He is specialized in Agronomy and an alumnus of University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad. He is handling all the research trials related to sugarcane crop production and AICRP trials on Sugarcane Improvement. He is involved in maintenance of KIAAR farm activities and three tier seed nursery program in collaboration with Godavari Bio-Refineries Limited (GBL). He assists in development of crop production technologies for improving the productivity of sugarcane and allied crops cultivated in the region. He is also actively involved in organising extension activities like training, field days and demonstrations.

    Mr. Basavaraj Kongawad joined KIAAR, Sameerwadi in February 2003. Before joining KIAAR, he has served at the University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad as a Researcher and Agriculture Officer at Kisan Plant Biotech Limited Company. On campus, you can find him involved in farm management activities and advising new agricultural technologies to farmers. He enjoys playing badminton and watching sports.

     
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    Mr. Sunil Kumar Jha

    Senior Remote Sensing Scientist, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Mr. Sunil Kumar Jha is working as the Sr. Remote Sensing Scientist at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR), Sameerwadi. He has received his master's degree from Birla Institute of Technology (BIT), Ranchi with distinction (Batch Topper) and graduated from Nagpur University in Electronics Engineering. He has overall 7+ years of industrial experience, and 3+ years in agriculture using remote sensing and GIS.

    Mr. Jha does research about various techniques and issues in monitoring agricultural dynamics from space. His area of interest includes Agriculture, Forestry, watersheds, and Glacier mapping using RS and GIS. He is currently involved in crop identification, crop mapping, yield estimation, ET mapping at the local and regional scale, crop water stress assessment, chlorophyll and nitrogen mapping, biomass estimation, Digital Elevation Model (DEM), crop height mapping using UAV, microwave remote sensing for agriculture. He is currently working with AI/ML team to execute new Remote Sensing based products. He is engaged in Agricultural labeled GPS database creation for providing cadastral level services to the farmers.

     
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    Mrs. Vrushali Deshmukh

    Soil Scientist, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Mrs. Vrushali Deshmukh is a Soil Scientist at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR), Sameerwadi. Vrushali is specialized in Land Resource Management under Soil Science and Agricultural Chemistry. She has completed Master's degree in National Bureau of Soil Survey and Land Use planning (NBSS&LUP), Nagpur. She is handling Soil Science laboratory and Vermicompost production. She is involved in analyzing soil, water and leaf samples for nutrients and reclamation. She is also involved in giving customized recommendations to farmers about the application of fertilizers, organic manures and soil amendments based on soil analysis and target yield.

    Vrushali joined KIAAR, Sameerwadi in Jan 2020. Before joining KIAAR, she worked as an Assistant Professor at Sahyadri College of Agricultural Engineering, Karad. On-campus, you can find her involved in soil research, visiting farmer's fields for soil sample collection, tutoring the farmers about new agricultural technologies and arranging training programme for farmers to covey importance of “Soil Testing and reclamation of soils”. She has lots of interest in travelling and enjoys playing outdoor games like Basketball and badminton.

     
  • Mrs. Yogita Algat

    Computer Programmer, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Mrs. Algat Yogita is a Computer Programmer at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR), Sameerwadi. She has completed a Master of Computer Engineering (ME Computer) from Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU).

    Yogita is working on Web Application Development, GIS (Geographic information system), Machine Learning, and Deep Learning Algorithms on geospatial data. She is currently working on Crop classification using Machine Learning and Deep Learning.

    Mrs. Yogita joined KIAAR, Sameerwadi in July 2020. Before joining KIAAR, she was working as a Lecturer in SND Polytechnic, Yeola. She has 3 years of experience in Lecturership.

     
  • Mr. Anirban Bandyopadhyay

    Junior Research Fellow (JRF), K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Shri. Anirban Bandyopadhyay pursued B.Sc. (2014) in Geography from the University of Calcutta. He completed PG Diploma in Remote Sensing-GIS from Sambalpur University. Later he joined The University of Madras (Chepauk campus) for the postgraduate study of M.Sc., in Geoinformatics (2017). After working in Hyderabad for a time period, he was admitted at Birla Institute of Technology (BIT, Mesra) as an M.Tech. candidate in Remote Sensing (2020), where he secured scores with distinction (Gold Medal).

    During his study years, he had been an intern at Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO)’s RRSC (E), Kolkata in 2019-2020 alongside Chengdu (Sichuan), China in the year 2017 at Mei Shi International School. He started working as a Research Project Assistant at North Eastern Space Applications Centre (NESAC, Shillong) in 2020. He also has been executing a few outsourced workflows from Australia, Canada, UAE e.t.c as a GIS consultant. He published a joint work- Identification of Thermally Critical Zone Based on Urban Surface Imperviousness– A thermal Remote Sensing Study on KMC Jurisdiction, West Bengal, India in the book of Changing Urban Scenario and Emerging Conflicts in Post Globalisation India (ISBN- 978-81-929234-8-2). He also is an individual member of ISPRS since 2019.

     
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    Ms. Veena Baligar

    Research Assistant, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research, Sameerwadi, Karnataka, India

    Ms. Veena Baligar is a Research Assistant at K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR), Sameerwadi. Veena has perceived her B.Sc. (Agriculture) from the University of Agricultural Science, Dharwad, College of Agriculture, Vijayapur. She is actively involved in all the Production of Biofertilizers and Compost cultures, Digitization of farms, Isolation of Soil Microbes and Vermicompost production. Veena assists the scientists of KIAAR in farm management and maintenance of all the research trials including data collection, compilation and analysis.

    Veena joined KIAAR, Sameerwadi in January, 2020. On-campus, you can find her involved in Agricultural Research Activities, visiting fields for data collection, collection of soil samples and GPS coordinates and organizing training programs for farmers to covey the importance of “Biofertilizers and Compost Cultures”.  She is interested in reading books and novels.