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Empowering The Nation Through ‘Digital India Project’

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The digital india project includes several projects which will focus on better governance, knowledge. Wikimedia Commons
The digital india project includes several projects which will focus on better governance, knowledge. Wikimedia Commons
  • Digital India Project will boost the development process and will help the citizens to engage themselves in a hassle-free way
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Digital Media program to push the use of technology
  • The Ministry of Tourism has taken up the initiative of implementatingTourist Visa on Arrival enabled with Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA)

Digital India initiative has been launched by the government of India to increase digital connectivity and make governance more transparent. The initiative includes several projects which will focus on better governance, knowledge and universal phone connectivity across the country. Under the digital program, the government plans to introduce Public Internet Access Program, Broadband Highways, Universal Access to Mobile Connectivity and much more. These all platforms will boost the development process and will help the citizens to engage themselves in a hassle-free way.

Also Read: Section 377: Does It Really Has Anything To Do With Indian Culture?

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Digital Media program to push the use of technology to connect and empower people in areas relating to health, education, labour and employment, commerce, etc. The governance is shifting from e-governance to m-governance where “M” stands for mobile governance. The initiative is to bring big investments in the technology sector and this will further help in creating a participative, transparent and responsive government.

The governance is shifting from e-governance to m-governance where “M” stands for mobile governance. Wikimedia Commons
The governance is shifting from e-governance to m-governance where “M” stands for mobile governance. Wikimedia Commons

Here are some key initiatives which form a part of Digital India week:

  1. SWATCH BHAARAT app

The Swachhta Abhiyan is an initiative by the government for informing the citizens of sanitation and hygiene. The program has turned into a national campaign with citizens becoming active participants in cleanliness drive across the nation.

The dream of Mahatma Gandhi of a ‘Clean India’ is being realized with millions of people across the country joining the cleanliness initiatives of the government departments to make India clean as a part of this ‘Jan Andolan’.

The Swachhta Abhiyan is an initiative by the government for informing the citizens of sanitation and hygiene. Wikimedia Commons
The Swachhta Abhiyan is an initiative by the government for informing the citizens of sanitation and hygiene. Wikimedia Commons

Website: https://swachhbharat.mygov.in/

  1. PRADHAN MANTRI JAN-DHAN YOJANA (PMJDY)

Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana is a financial inclusion plan comprising an integrated approach to bind all the financial transactions of all the citizens. The plan contemplates universal access to banking facilities at least one basic banking account in every household, financial literacy, access to credit, insurance and pension facility.

The scheme proposes of channelling all Government benefits (from Centre / State / Local Body) to the beneficiaries’ accounts and pushing the Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) scheme of the Union Government.

Website: http://pmjdy.gov.in/

3. GOODS AND SERVICE TAX NETWORK (GSTN)

The GST System Project is a remarkable and complex IT initiative. It is for the first time that a uniform interface is established for the taxpayer and a common and shared IT infrastructure between the Centre and States.

Also Read: 10 Famous Indian Scientists Who Made The Difference

The platform is a trusted National Information Utility (NIU) that will help in achieving a reliable and efficient IT backbone for the smooth functioning of the Goods & Services Tax system. It enables economic agents to leverage the entire nation as one market with minimal indirect tax compliance cost.

Website: h ttp://www.gstn.org/index.php

4. FARMER PORTAL

The Farmer Portal provides all the relevant information and services to the farming community and private sector through information and communication technologies. It will help in supplementing the existing delivery channels provided for by the department.

The Farmer Portal provides all the relevant information and services to the farming community and private sector. Wikimedia Commons
The Farmer Portal provides all the relevant information and services to the farming community and private sector. Wikimedia Commons

Farmers’ Portal is an initiative to create a one-stop window for meeting all informational needs relating to Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Fisheries sectors production, sale/storage of an Indian farmer.

With this, Indian Farmer will not be required to scuffle through different websites for any information.

Website: http://farmer.gov.in/

5. eVISA

The Ministry of Tourism has taken up the initiative of implementatingTourist Visa on Arrival enabled with Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA). It strongly backed by Ministry of Home Affairs,  Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Civil Aviation for implementing this programme.

Also Read: Kalpana Chawala: The Woman Who Made The Difference

The e-Tourist Visa enables the foreign visitor to apply for an Indian Visa from his/her home country without visiting the Indian embassy and can also pay the visa fee online.

Website: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html

6. DIGITIZE INDIA

Digitize India is an initiative under the Digital India Program of the Government of India. Digitize India Platform will provide digitization of services of all the scanned document or physical documents for any official work.

The focus is to digitalize all the existing data which are in different formats into data extracts for document management

Website: https://digitizeindia.gov.in/

7. DIGITAL AIIMS

Through Digital AIIMS program, every Patient visiting AIIMS will be given a Digital Identity by the Unique Health Identification Number and it will be generated on an Aadhar platform.

Through Digital AIIMS program, every Patient visiting AIIMS will be given a Digital Identity. Wikimedia Commons
Through Digital AIIMS program, every Patient visiting AIIMS will be given a Digital Identity. Wikimedia Commons

The project was initiated in January 2015 with the creation of an effective linkage between AIIMS, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeiTY).

Website.http://ehospital.nic.in/ehospital/

8. DIGILOCKER

Targeted at the idea of paperless governance, DigiLocker is the flagship program of the Indian Government. The initiative aimed at transforming India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy.

DigiLocker runs parallel with Digital India’s vision, where every citizen of the country will be provided with a private space on a public cloud and making all documents/certificates available in this space.

Through this platform, issuance and verification of documents will be done in a manner, thus eliminating the requirement of any physical documents.

Website.https://digilocker.gov.in/

Next Story

The Government Shutdown in Washington D.C

At a recent event to sign the LOVE act into law, Bowser – flanked by grateful newlyweds – said, “Just so my team knows, we’re probably going to want to keep that power.”

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District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser, seated, holds the LOVE Act she signed, Jan. 11, 2019. VOA

No city experiences a shutdown quite like Washington.

Besides the economic impact, a shutdown warps the nation’s capital on a cultural, recreational and logistical level — touching everybody from garbage collectors to young parents, prospective newlyweds to aspiring Eagle Scouts.

The current partial shutdown , now in a record fourth week, has also provided a quiet boon for Mayor Muriel Bowser’s government, which rushed into the void to claim unprecedented new powers while making a public show of literally cleaning up the federal government’s mess.

The economic situation is, of course, brutal. Recent surveys estimate that the federal government directly employs more than 364,000 people in the greater Washington area including northern Virginia and southern Maryland. The District of Columbia alone — population 700,000 — contains more than 102,000 jobs in agencies that are now without appropriations funding.

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People rally to call for an end to the partial government shutdown in Detroit, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019. VOA

Deputy City Administrator Kevin Donahue made the analogy to the main plant shutting down in a factory town — with the subsequent knock-on effect through the service industries like restaurants, food trucks, entertainment and taxis.

“What keeps us up at night is not the work we know we have to do in weeks one and two,” Donahue said. It’s the unpredictable impacts of weeks four and five and onward, he said, with the potential for mass restaurant closures or residents missing payments on rent, mortgages, car loans or school fees.

Most immediately, the shutdown created a logistical and public health problem. The district is riddled with National Park Service land, ranging from the National Mall to urban green spaces like Dupont Circle and dozens of neighborhood parks.

Washington sanitation crews now empty the trash bins at 122 separate NPS sites — three times a day in the case of the bins at the National Mall. It’s costing at least $54,000 per week in overtime, and Donahue said there’s a handshake agreement dating back to previous shutdowns that Washington will be compensated when the government reopens. The NPS recently announced it would tap into other funds to resume its own trash pickup at some — but not all — of the Washington sites.

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A U.S. Internal Revenue Services employee holds signs in front of the federal building at a rally against the U.S. federal government shutdown, in Ogden, Utah, Jan. 10, 2019. VOA

“There’s a past practice of reimbursement,” Donahue said. “But they don’t have a legal obligation to compensate us.”

Given Washington’s tortured relationship with the federal government, which can essentially alter or block any local law, city officials have seemingly relished the chance to highlight the ironies of the moment. They frequently claim they are treated by Congress as if they can’t handle their own affairs; now they’re taking over and covering for a dysfunctional central government.

“When the federal government shuts down, we step up,” Bowser said during a Jan. 4 news conference with Washington’s nonvoting congressional delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton, to announce a renewed push this year for district statehood.

The shutdown cuts a cultural swath through the lives of city residents. The entire Smithsonian network of museums, including the zoo , closed their doors about a week into the shutdown, and quasi-federal entities like the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts have severely cut back their hours.

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Air passengers heading to their departure gates enter TSA precheck before going through security screening at Orlando International Airport, June 21, 2018, in Orlando, Fla. (VOA)

On a recent weekend, the usual Saturday morning kids’ drumming workshop at the BloomBars cultural center in Columbia Heights drew nearly triple the usual crowd, with parents and strollers lined halfway up the block in the rain. The reason: desperate parents searching for something to occupy their kids in a city where more than a dozen free museums and the zoo have been shuttered.

“It happens every time,” laughed BloomBars founder John Chambers, who recalls an identical spike during the 16-day 2013 shutdown. “But this time it feels like there’s more of a panic among people because (this shutdown) genuinely seems open-ended.”

The district is littered with shutdown specials — offering furloughed federal employees discounts on everything from food and drink to live theater and medical marijuana .

Examples of unexpected shutdown fallout are all around. High school senior Yosias Zelalem was all set to secure his Eagle Scout rank with a project to repair park benches along the Mount Vernon Trail. But his liaison at the NPS has been furloughed and the project is frozen.

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Tourists arrive to visit the U.S. Capitol on a rainy morning in Washington, Dec. 28, 2018, during a partial government shutdown.. VOA

“I didn’t really think about it until New Year’s came and went,” said Zelalem, who needs to complete the project before he turns 18 on March 27. “I honestly didn’t expect it to go on this long. Now everybody’s talking like this could go for months.”

One of the more random side-effects of shutdown: the closure of the marriage bureau.

Bowser told The Associated Press that even she was surprised to learn that local couples couldn’t get their marriage licenses because Congress funds the local court system. Divorce proceedings, however, were unaffected.

Also Read: Democrats in Congress Squarely Responsible for the Shutdown: Donald Trump

Bowser quickly tapped allies on the Council of the District of Columbia to pass emergency legislation called the Let Our Vows Endure (LOVE) act, which granted her administration the right to issue marriage licenses. In addition to an enjoyable public victory that drew national attention, Bowser’s administration just stepped into the federal void to claim a whole new power ahead of an impending district statehood push.

At a recent event to sign the LOVE act into law, Bowser – flanked by grateful newlyweds – said, “Just so my team knows, we’re probably going to want to keep that power.”

Nobody laughed and she didn’t seem to be joking. (VOA)