The Digital India programme is a flagship programme of the Government of India with a vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy. It aims to connect the dots of various projects, past and present, to bring India to a global platform. It will help in moving with the universal trends of digital innovation and create positive impact in the lives of people – rural and urban, young and old.
Here’s a list of all the benefits that the government seem to directly slather us with under the Digital India initiative.
The Digital India Programme is an umbrella term given to digitize all present government initiatives and governance functions.
The Projects rests on Nine Pillars summarized below:
Image Source: Bureaucrat Express
Digital India together with Make in India and Skill India programme seeks to propel India forward economically by creating entrepreneurial oppurtunities, giving a push to domestic manufacturing, focus on practial skill based knowledge and introducing transparency in government functionings. The vision of ‘Net Zero Imports by 2020’ will have a much needed, huge boosting effect on the Indian manufacturing sector.
The ambitious project with an estimated cost of Rs. 1.13 lakh crores was first announced by PM Modi in his Independence Day speech in 2014 and unveiled at the recently concluded Digital India Week.
The most expensive amongst all the undertaking is the setting up of broadband highways in an attempt to allow every nook and corner of the country access to internet.
Using Data Analytics and Cloud Based Systems, the buzzwords in the field of technology. These days, the government plans India to transition from a cash based to cashless economy meaning mobile phone and bank account are used for financial inclusion while financial transactions go electronic and cashless.
As a part of cloud based e-governance initiatives, the two noteworthy services include DigiLockers and e-Sign.
Now, citizens can upload all their important documents and certificates (e.g. driving license, voter ID, school certificates) directly into citizens’ lockers and they can be electronically signed using the eSign facility. It reduces overhead paper cost for the government and allows you to apply to multiple agencies for example for a job. The electronically signed documents will be as good as the self-attested ones that we use to hold on to while applying in a kilometer long line for a change in address for in our voter id.
Gradually, over time government plans to setup e-Seva Kendras on the lines of Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) again with public private partnership to enable all services to be dispensed online.
Accept it folks, it will be a glad day when the reign of the babujis will be over. Mr. Mussadi Lal will have a field day filling his pension application at the convenience of his home.
As per the World Bank report, a 10% increase in mobile and broadband penetration increases the per capita GDP by 0.81% and 1.38% respectively in the developing countries. If Digital India project could help increasing the broadband penetration across India (current ~7%) by 50% and mobile penetration in rural India (current ~45%) by 30% in next 2 years, the corresponding increase in GDP could be 9% (~$180 billion).
This is just the impact of 2 out of 9 pillars of Digital India project. Adding to this growth and prosperity would be the impact of other pillars that would empower the citizens with gamut of services at their fingertips.
The possibilities are boundless of a digitally connected India, yet the challenges are many as well. The hurdles can be lack of coordination between government departments, costs overrun, infrastructure bottlenecks and above all cyber security impediments.
Yet, keeping in mind there’s no such thing as a free lunch, the exorbitant cost of the project can be justified by the positive externalities it will create. (Digital India: Mega Possibilities)
All That She Wants: Roti, Kapda, Makaan Aur Broadband : Your answers to ‘What’s in it for me’?
We’d love to hear from you of what you think of the Digital India project and also ED’s initiative of decoding it all for you through this campaign.
Graphic credits: Harshita Sharma & Abhinav Jain (feature image and cover banner)
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.