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Digital India Policy by Government to spread its wings in Villages through new Digital Village initiative

This programme aims to cover 100 villages at its initial stage after which it will spread further

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Digitization Of Rural India
An Indian Village(pixabay)
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New Delhi, Dec 20, 2016:  Government’s Digital India policy will soon see a boost with a new programme known as  Digital Village. This initiative will provide services like health and education in villages with the help of technology.

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This programme aims to cover 100 villages at its initial stage after which it will spread further, Law and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said today. In an event Prasad said “We are going to unleash another important initiative- Digital Village. As per my understanding, it will be a collector-driven initiative. We propose to begin with 100 villages and expand it later.”

Collector in collaboration with local bodies may select a village to provide health, education and other virtual world service through Wi-Fi connectivity. The minister also appealed to the officers for pro-actively supporting government’s digital initiative aimed at transforming the country, mentioned PTI.

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“We have trained 18 lakh people over a span of four days. We may scale it (digital payments training) up in January,” he said.

Government has set a target of training 1.25 crore people on digital payments by March 31, 2017. Appreciating National Informatics Centre, Minister of State for Law and IT P P Chaudhary said that there are about 8,000 websites carrying information about government work and facilitating transactions.

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“I would like to suggest some of the areas where we have to perform. We are far behind in the generation of Intellectual Property. In the area of cyber security, we have to be pro-active and not only be reactive,” Chaudhary said.

This is the first time Indians are having access to the government without intermediaries, said IT secretary Aruna Sundararajan. At the event, e-governance service of departments from Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab and Jharkhand won Digital India awards, earlier known as Web Ratna Awards.

Rajasthan won platinum award in the state category while Tamil Nadu received Gold and Haryana silver award for e-governance services. North Goa won platinum award in districts category. Kupwara received Gold and Udham Singh Nagar bagged silver award for e-governance. Municipal Corporations of Surat, Greater Visakhapatnam, Madurai and UP’s e-NagarSewaUP bagged award.

prepared by Saptaparni Goon of NewsGram. Twitter: @saptaparni_goon

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Apple Expands Its Campus to Austin, East and West U.S.

The infusion of thousands of new and highly paid residents can ripple through an economy

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Apple, Campus
A customer is entering the Apple store in Fairfax, Virginia. VOA

Apple will build a $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas, break ground on smaller locations in Seattle, San Diego and Culver City, California, and over the next three years expand in Pittsburgh, New York and Colorado.

The tech giant said Thursday that the new campus in Austin, less than a mile from existing Apple facilities, will open with 5,000 positions in engineering, research and development, operations, finance, sales, and customer support. The site, according to Apple, will have the capacity to eventually accommodate 15,000 employees.

The three other new locations will have more than 1,000 employees each.

Early this year, Apple said that it would make more than $30 billion in capital expenditures in the U.S. over the next five years. That, the company said in January, would create more than 20,000 new jobs at existing and new campuses that Apple planned to build.

Apple, Campus, Tim cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during an event to announce new products, Oct. 30, 2018, in the Brooklyn borough of New York. VOA 

Where U.S. companies open new facilities or plants has always had the potential for public and political backlash.

That potential has intensified under the Trump administration, which has pushed companies to keep more of their operations inside the country’s borders.

While CEO Tim Cook has steered mostly clear President Donald Trump’s ire, Apple did receive some push back three months ago from the White House.

Apple sent a letter to the U.S. trade representative warning that the burgeoning trade war with China and rising tariffs could force higher prices for U.S. consumers.

Trump in a tweet told Apple to start making its products in the U.S., and not China.

Apple uses a lot of facilities overseas to produce components and its products, including China.

Apple, Tim Cook, Campus
A guest looks at the Touch Bar on a MacBook computer shown in a demo room following the announcement of new products at Apple headquarters, in Cupertino, California. VOA

Top tech executives from Google, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle and Qualcomm gathered at the White House earlier this month to discuss strained ties between the administration and the industry, and trade tensions with China. Cook was not among them, nor was Amazon’s Jeff Bezos.

There are already 6,000 Apple employees in Austin, its largest operation outside of company headquarters in Cupertino, California, where 37,000 people are employed.

“Apple has been a vital part of the Austin community for a quarter century, and we are thrilled that they are deepening their investment in our people and the city we love,” said Austin Mayor Steve Adler in a prepared statement Thursday.

Apple said nearly a year ago that it would begin canvassing the U.S. for another campus.

Cities offered incentives to lure the company, but Cook avoided a high-profile competition that pitted them against one another as Amazon did over the last year and a half.

Apple, Tim Cook, Campus
iPhone 8 was also launched with a special edition red colour, Pixabay

Amazon, too, expands

Amazon announced in November after a 14-month search it had selected Long Island City, Queens, and Arlington, Virginia, as the joint winners. Each site will employ around 25,000 people.

Cities are eager to bring in more tech employers because companies like Apple and Amazon ladle out six-figure salaries to engineers and other skilled workers.

Also Read: China Bans iPhone Sales Due to Patent Dispute

The infusion of thousands of new and highly paid residents can ripple through an economy, with those employees filling restaurants, theaters, buying property and paying taxes.

Annual pay will vary at the new locations, but Apple workers in Cupertino have an average annual salary of about $125,000, according to a report the company submitted to the city. (VOA)