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Govt of India joins hands with Google for a ‘Digital India’

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MUMBAI: Working towards the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision for a digital India, the Government of India has partnered with the online giant Google.

Announcing the initiative Department of Information Technology secretary RS Sharma said, "The Digital India programme has been launched with the vision of transforming India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy. It can bring India at par with other developed countries.”

“I'm happy Google is coming forward to roll out initiatives that will contribute to the Digital India vision. I'm sure others will come forward and join this movement."

As a part of the plan, Google is going to run a number of campaigns in collaboration with the Indian government. Google would also develop a mobile application for the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) aiming to bring the PMO to every citizen. The app will be developed through a contest to be soon launched by Google and MyGov, the citizen engagement platform of the government.

According to Google, the motive behind the contest is to showcase that ‘Indians can build a world class app’.

 Google would also build a multi-language ecosystem on the web to help the government transition into the increasingly 'mobile' India.

In a bid to promote the digital empowerment of citizens, the company will push programmes like Helping Women get Online and getting Indian SMEs Online. This will also continue to map and photograph heritage and culture sites to bring them online.

Additionally, to encourage digital literacy and internet safety, Google will introduce curriculums for schools, officials and elected representatives.

 Google India vice president and managing director Rajan Anandan added, "India is already home to the third largest number of internet users globally with 245 million users as of June 2014.  We are on track to become the second largest user market by 2015 and a 500 million-user market by 2016. Yet, there are more than a billion people who will need to be brought online for India to realise the vision of a digitally connected, knowledge economy. Prime Minister Modi's Digital India programme will play a transformational role in achieving this."

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