New Delhi: India ranked a lowly 131 out of 167 countries on the global index that measures the information and communication technology (ICT) access in a country. However, India has witnessed a gradual increase in the number of households using the internet.
UN International Telecommunications Union’s flagship measuring the Information Society Report disclosed that globally 43 per cent of the world population is on the online platform which is 3.2 billion people.
The report also said that mobile subscriptions have reached almost 7.1 billion worldwide and 95 per cent of the world population is covered by mobile network now.
This report recorded the data between 2010 to 2015 and also said that every nation improved during this time. India, however, saw a fall of 6 notches from its position in 2010.
Asia displays a stark difference among its countries’ level of access to technology. While Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong are among the six countries from Asia that are in top 20. Countries like India are ranked disappointingly low.
South Korea secured the numero uno spot followed by Denmark.
India saw an increase in the number of mobile users. In 2010, it was 62 per cent and now in 2015, it has increased to almost 75 per cent. The number of household with a computer has doubled from 6.1 to 13 and the percentage of individuals using the internet went up to 18 per cent from 7.5 per cent, five years ago.
The guild between nations is shown by the fact that 81 per cent households in developed countries have home internet access which is just 36 per cent in the developing world and it drops below to hardly 6 per cent in the least developed countries.
The was a rapid growth in the use of the internet in mobile phones.
India still has a large portion of the population living in villages so it is obvious that the country will take its time to improve its rank.
In his first speech after winning the election for his second term, Prime Minister Narendra Modi proclaimed that “…we have to win ‘sabka vishwas’ (everyones trust).” What will be required to win that trust is establishing a true state of interdependence. Interdependence can be achieved by creating a country in which there is a shared understanding of the value of each citizen and a reliance on one another to eliminate discrimination, hostility, and prejudice and to provide equality and opportunity for all. All citizens must be active participants in shaping the future of India. They must be equal partners in Indias inclusive economic mobility and in Indias shared prosperity.
Independence Day is the perfect day to highlight the importance of and advance the concept of interdependence. This can be accomplished by promoting the need for a unified India on this national holiday.
The need for doing this is critical. Unfortunately, in the period since the Prime Minister called for winning “trust” in his speech, some Indians have engaged in actions destroying it.
Sadly, the heinous crimes at the beginning of Modi’s second term are nothing new. There were several lynchings and numerous attacks on Muslims during his first term.
Modi did not speak out vigorously then. He must do so now to demonstrate the essential leadership that will be required to create a state of interdependence. There are other serious conditions that must be addressed as well. To name just a few: sexual violence and subjugation of females continues; the caste system still exists; and, the problematic conditions of those in the weaker sections persist.
By speaking out, Prime Minister Modi can bring the country together to confront the matters that are hardening India’s democratic arteries. He cannot do that alone, however. He will need buy in and support from across the country and the citizenry.
A first step should be to “find our spiritual common ground”. That step can be initiated by recognizing that spirit is the invisible force that brings us together regardless of our caste, race, religion, region or political predisposition. The goal in discovering that common ground should be to create one nation under God. That nation would be an interdependent one and its God would be ecumenical and non-denominational. Its God would be welcoming to all.
As one nation, India would celebrate and embrace the richness of religious diversity
As one nation, India would be a role model and exemplar for other democracies to emulate
Everyone must play a role in establishing India as one nation. Each citizen should engage in small acts of kindness by reaching out to those less fortunate and to the downtrodden by extending a helping hand and a hand up.
Some people can make special contributions. Religious leaders should promote interfaith dialogue. They should bring people together followers of different persuasions for meaningful conversations. They should promote a dialogue of understanding and a shared sense of community with other faiths. They should call the fact that attack on one faith is attack on all faiths. Political leaders should promote a framework of unity and civility. Civic and community leaders should promote collaboration in problem-solving. They should toil together their creeds to plant the seeds for doing good deeds.
There is no better day on which to resume our journey than Independence Day. There is no better way to make that journey than to chart a course to interdependence. By reaching that destination, India will establish itself as the beacon of hope for democracy worldwide. By realizing that potential, India will bring a new dawn for democracy in this 21st century. (IANS)