TECH TALK: Transforming Rural India: More ICT Projects (Part 2)

Setu: An initiative by the Maharashtra government for setting up citizen facilitation centres across the state is Setu. The aim, according to the website is to create foundation for citizen centric e-governance, at district headquarters and subsequently at taluka headquarters. Setu offers single window clearance of 83 important certificates (includes renewal of leases ,permits & licenses), quick redressel of public grievances, common registry of letters, petitions for all sections of the office, On line pendency monitoring of all above.

Akashganga: Based in Guajarat, Akashganga [was] conceived with the objective to spread information technology among rural masses. [It] identified milk cooperative society where each family staying in the village is member & visiting the society to sell milk produced by them (through cattle owned) to the society daily twice. Spread of information & technology initiated with automating their routine milk collection process which otherwise was done manually, beginning with computer and software in regional language, weighing scale, card reader & instrument to integrate the full process. Also developed was an accounting system (Rojmel) to automate and integrate their accounting function in the system. (More)

Educational IT Initiatives

There are several projects centred around Education. These include:

Headstart: It is a project in Madhya Pradesh to provide computer-enabled education and development of basic computer skills for all students in Primary Schools and Middle Schools through the 7000 Jan Shiksha Kendras (cluster resource centres) located in Middle School premises in 48 districts. It will equip every Jan Shiksha Kendra in the state with computer hardware and multimedia software. It repositions the JSK as a media unit capable of providing computer-aided education for the children of the middle school in which the JSK is located and familiarization to computers to all children in primary schools through simple demos and games to excite their imagination. So far, about 2,700 Headstart centres have been set up. (More)

AP Schools: In 2002, the Andhra Pradesh government contracted with NIIT for setting up 663 modern computer classrooms with over 8,000 computers and implementation of computer education in high schools to education over 300,000 students. The five-year project was worth Rs 155 crore (USD 30 million), averaging Rs 90 per student per month. (Details)

Vidya Vahini: The Indian government has launched a project called Vidya Vahini to provide for IT and IT-enabled education in 60,000 schools in India over three years (India has about 1.1 million schools), as part of a Rs 6,000 crore (USD 1.2 billion) project. A pilot covering 150 schools is currently underway. Each of the schools would be provided with a computer lab. The computer lab will also be equipped with Internet, Intranet and television to facilitate video-conferencing, Web-broadcasting and e-learning, according to the Financial Express.

Community Learning Centres: CLCs are being set up the Azim Premji Foundation in rural Karnataka, with the objectives of attracting children to schools, creating excitement in and around the school, Simplifying difficult concepts, thereby making learning exciting and fundamentals strong and building a Sound foundation to IT literacy. A CLC has about 6-8 computers in a Government Higher Primary School, used by children of that school during school hours for learning curriculum through interactive games and exercises. They are Used by the community before or after school hours and during holidays. So far, about 90 CLCs have been set up.

Tomorrow: Sristi and Learnings

TECH TALK Transforming Rural India+T

Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.