Indians are getting digitally savvy but while they download more apps from the Play Store, they should develop new applications and upload them as well, minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said during “Google For India” virtual event on July 13.
Union Minister for Electronics and Information Technology Prasad said that the government had set a target of converting one lakh villages into digital villages this financial year and sought Google’s support for the initiative.
“I will appreciate if Google can pick up a good cluster of villages and develop them as model digital villages, models for empowerment, skilling, healthcare, telemedicine, distant education ... from agriculture to rural empowerment,” he said.
Prasad was speaking at the event also addressed by Google CEO Sundar Pichai, who announced a $10-billion Google For India Digitisation Fund.
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Recognising the tech giant’s efforts towards India, Prasad stressed on how Pichai, as its top executive, has helped the company create such products since he had roots in this country but had exposure to the whole world.
Speaking about the country’s digital infrastructure--digital payments through UPI to the JAM trinity of Jan Dhan, Aadhaar and Mobile, Prasad said these home-grown technology platforms could work with Google to create global products in India.
Appreciating innovations like AI for weather prediction, translations and also Google Maps, Prasad said that there was a need for technological intervention in skilling, distance learning, healthcare and rural empowerment.