Has India succeeded in its mission of Digital India to transform India into a digitally empowered society? Critically analyze.
Digital India program of GOI envisaged building upon 3 pillars viz, Digital infrastructure & network, Digital service delivery system, and digital empowerment of citizens.
The success of Digital India:
- E-governance – The rapid transformation of governance using ICT tools at all levels, i.e,
- Government to Government – PRAGATI portal, e-KRANTI
- Government to Business – SPICE portal, SRIJAN, etc
- Government to Employee – pension portals, online grievance redressal, etc
- Economy – Digital India has enabled financial inclusion, online payment systems, e-banking, e-commerce, etc.
- Service delivery – online platforms have eased the constraints of time & resources, e.g Bhuvan Panchayat.
- Education – Boom in EdTech sector and online education.
- Mobile & Internet services – India has the fastest-growing population that has access to internet services.
- Empowered society – Access to online platforms enables doorstep delivery of freedom of speech, expression & information.
Challenges that remain:
- Hurdles related to internet penetration in remote areas, access to the poor, etc.
- The monopoly of BigTech companies in controlling Indian online marketing business.
- Issues related to Data Privacy & Cyber Security.
- Slow internet speeds.
- A large section of the population remains digitally illiterate.
Even though Digital India has transformed the public service delivery scenario in the country, a lot needs to be achieved in making it more affordable, available & accessible.