by Sejuti Das

India’s digital future: Great initiative, but it is just the beginning

Feb 11, 2016
BusinessEnergy IndustryInternet

Is India’s digital future restricted to the millennials, or is it relevant to a fisherman in Kerala? A panel ponders this at NASSCOM 2016.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been quite vocal about Digital India, but the stark fact is that the vast majority of people in rural areas do not have access to the basics of life. So, is it really easy to transform words written on a white paper into reality, asked journalist Rajdeep Sardesai at NASSCOM 2016.

“India has often been criticized for missing the revolution bus, but we boarded the IT bus early and captured the best seat as well. Now we are bound on a digital journey. At this stage, it may be valuable to ponder a few questions,” said Sardesai.

One question he raised was–is the digital era restricted to the millennials and the young upwardly mobile ones? Or is it powerful enough to be adopted by, say, a fisherman in Kerala?

To answer that, Dr. Ajay Kumar, additional secretary, Department of Electronics and Information Technology said, “Things are moving slowly, and yes, we have a long way to go, but considering the increased adoption of internet connectivity and smartphones, India is definitely on the right path.”

CP Gurnani, vice chairman of NASSCOM and CEO of TechMahindra said, “Digital absorption is definitely huge in the ecommerce sector. Technology is providing a lot of opportunity for Indians.”

Ronnie Screwala, Founder, Unilazer Ventures said, “It’s great to have lofty goals and manage to achieve only 80 percent of it. Once you have a long term goal post, you can see big and have a lot of space to grow and adopt.”

Wrapping it up, all agreed that it is a great initiative, but felt that it is just the beginning.

You can now catch up with our extensive NASSCOM 2016 coverage.