Saturday, March 28, 2015

Digital Skills for India

Knowledge economy is not a new phrase. For long many countries have worked hard to increase their technological prowess. They have been able to generate a lot of economic success by doing so. Industrial growth is all about having skilled people who are ready to start working the day infrastructure becomes available. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi India has embarked on the path of creating sets and sets of skilled workers who are trained to work in particular sectors and not just rely on traditional knowledge of various low paying jobs.

Indian villages still are not part of India’s growth story mainly because people who live in villages have been disconnected from the mainstream development for so long. Although based on numbers you can go ahead and argue that they are the actual mainstream of this country. They are still forced to do what they have been doing for generations, the way they have been doing it ever since.

Under the purview of  #DigitalIndia campaign Government of India is trying to fill this gap. By taking the first world inventions to villages they are trying to connect the available knowledge with available workforce. Idea to train people with digital skills is going to be a game changer. People will be able to learn skills that will enable and empower them. They will be ready for the new world. One very important thing which will come out of this would be that they would get their voice in the increasing sphere of social media.

Intel’s ( Digital Skills for India Program is a great boost for the vision of PM Modi. Intel has been a pioneer in computing field. They have taken an initiative to train 5 million people and take the technological knowhow to 1000 panchayats. I would like to thank them and congratulate them for their efforts and becoming part of our growth engine.

I was born in one such village and in my first 15 years of life I had not even seen a computer and did not get to touch one for another year.  I got to learn the use of a computer for the first time when I took admission in my under graduate course. That, if you think, delayed exposure to the rest of the world and technological developments by years.

This initiative by Intel is going to give people the kick start that they need in the villages. They will know that a smart phone or a laptop with a broadband connection is all that they need to stay connected with rest of the world.

There is one particular aspect that I would like to be included in this digital literacy campaign. We all know that when people get something new their hands they first learn to misuse it. In all the trainings and educational sessions, they must be taught what not to do as well. The growth needs direction and should be imparted from the very beginning.

Very best wishes to all the partners, especially Intel and BBNL, in this endeavour.


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