India’s data and demographic dividend along with its proven technical proficiency will make this decade the country's ‘Techade’, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday.
Modi was speaking to beneficiaries on the sixth anniversary of the Digital India programme.
The country is also conscious of its responsibility as a data powerhouse and work is underway on all aspects of data privacy, Modi said via video conferencing. India had proven its technical proficiency during the Covid-19 pandemic with solutions such as Aarogya Setu and CoWin, which had become topics of discussion and attraction the world over, he added.
“Having such a monitoring tool (CoWin) for the process of vaccination is proof of our technical proficiency,” the Prime Minister said. Not only were the poor the beneficiaries of Digital India, but also the middle class and youngsters, Modi said, adding that youngsters would take digital empowerment to new heights, making the ongoing decade ‘India’s Techade’.
“This decade is going to greatly enhance India's capabilities in digital technology, India's share in the global digital economy. It is estimated that dozens of technology companies in India will join the unicorn club in the next few years,” he said. Speaking on the benefits of digital technologies during the pandemic, the PM said the government was able to send thousands of crores of rupees directly to the bank accounts of citizens during the lockdown, which even developed countries were unable to do.
He reiterated that the government had been able to transfer around ₹17 lakh crore directly into the bank accounts of citizens under various schemes in the last 6-7 years. Highlighting schemes such as Diksha, eNAM, eSanjeevani solution for telemedicine, DigiBunai and PM SVANidhi scheme, Modi said that Digital India and digital payments had helped street vendors build creditworthiness, aiding them during these hard times. He also added that lowcost smartphones and internet packs had helped people in remote villages access healthcare and education.