Digital India (DI) - Advantages, Impact of Digital India Scheme, 9 Pillars of Digital India

By K Balaji|Updated : November 30th, 2022

Launched on the 1st of July 2015; digital India is a campaign initiated by the central government to empower citizens digitally. Mr Narendra Modi, the current prime minister of India, incorporated it. This scheme ensures that government services are provided to the citizens via numerous digital channels.

As a responsible citizen, one should leverage the power of Digital India initiatives for added convenience! It is a very suitable way of storing important data safely in a digital format. People can always avoid losing their papers by using this technology, which is valuable for those who travel without their documents. This article comprehensively illustrates the digital India project's objectives, advantages, impact, and challenges.

Table of Content

What is Digital India?

The Digital India campaign includes initiatives to bring high-speed internet facilities to the country's rural areas. Digital India is also the enabler of other schemes launched by the government of India.

  • For example, the Aadhaar card service was enabled by the Digital India campaign.
  • With Aadhar cards, digital biometric ID cards for citizens were created.

Objectives of Digital India

The Digital India project motto was - Power to Empower. The 3 key areas of Digital India scheme were digital literacy, digital infrastructure creation, and digital delivery of services. The primary objectives of digital India programme are given below.

  • The mission combines several opinions into one broad concept so that every part becomes a portion of the larger objective.
  • DI programme provides smooth access to CSC or Common Service Centre in all country's localities.
  • It concentrates on giving a new structure to current schemes that can be accomplished in a synchronized way.
  • The Digital India project offered high-speed internet access to all Gram Panchayats.

Three Visions of Digital India Program

The digital India step towards the future incorporated three vision areas for the Digital India campaign, which are as follows:

First Vision of Digital India Scheme

The first vision area of the Digital India campaign is offering digital infrastructure as a utility to every resident of India. The missions under this vision area are listed below:

  • Offering high-speed internet to every citizen to deliver government services.
  • Offering a unique and lifelong digital identity to each resident of India.
  • Ensure every citizen has a mobile phone and a bank account to participate in the digital space.
  • Offering shared private space to citizens on a public cloud platform.
  • Offering secure cyberspace to the residents of India.

Second Vision of Digital India Project

The second vision focuses on providing governance/services when the citizens need them. This vision includes the following missions:

  • Integrating services under jurisdiction into one for better results.
  • Offering real-time services to citizens via an online platform.
  • Citizen rights/entitlements should be available on the cloud platform.
  • Improving the state of cashless transactions, ease of business, and GIS (Geospatial Information Systems).

Third Vision of Digital India Campaign

The third vision area focuses on the digital empowerment of the citizens. It includes the following missions:

  • Promoting digital literacy and making digital resources available to the residents.
  • Offering digital resources/services to citizens in Indian languages for added convenience.
  • Allowing citizens to submit documents digitally for various government services.

Initiatives Under Digitalization in India

Digital India initiatives were spread across infrastructure, services, and empowerment. Some common Digital India initiatives for citizens were:

Digital India Scheme

Infrastructure

Services

Empowerment

Aadhaar identity platform for citizens

BHIM for boosting cashless transactions.

BPO Scheme for boosting the IT/ITES growth.

BBNL (Bharat Broadband Network) for laying optical fibre lines

CCTNS for tracking criminal identity and enhancing policing.

MYGOV for better governance and bringing citizens closer to the government.

COE-IT for developing IoT ecosystem across the country

Digital AIIMS for offering a digital identity to every patient of AIIMS.

PAHAL (DBTL) for removing duplicate LPG connections in the country.

CSCS (Common Service Centres) for accessing public services.

E-Panchayat for ensuring better governance in rural areas.

PAYGOV India is an online payment gateway for citizens.

9 Digital India Pillars

The digital India scheme contained the following 9 pillars that must be apprehended. All these provided immense support for establishing the overall digital India project.

Broadband Highways:

Applying the national optic fibre network (NOFN) in India's 2.5 lakh gram panchayats would use a phased technique.

Universal Access to Mobile connectivity:

Providing mobile access to around 44,000 uncovered villages in India, the country's Government took measures to ensure all towns have mobile connectivity after 2018.

Public Internet access:

The motto of digital India was to increase the range of CSC or common services centres to 1.5 lakhs from 1.35 lakhs, which implied that the internet is available in every Panchayat.

E-Governance:

Enterprise methodology re-engineering was expected to be launched to enhance procedures and service delivery. Services were planned to be merged with UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India), mobile outlet, and payment gateway.

E-Kranti:

E-Kranti concentrates on the electronic delivery of various services, including health, education, justice, economic inclusion, and agribusiness.

Global Information:

It focused on hosting data online and visionary engagement via social media and additional web-based platforms such as MyGov.

Electronics Manufacturing:

This pillar of digital media concentrates on VSAT, top boxes, mobile, medical or consumer electronics, micro ATMs, smart cards, and energy meters.

IT Training for Jobs:

The Indian Government planned to train approximately one crore students in the IT-related sector, especially those from small villages and towns.

Early Harvest Programmes:

The Government of India is designed to deploy the Aadhaar Enabled Biometric Attendance System in every central Government office in Delhi. This web-based application software system would record the attendance online and could be viewed by respective stakeholders.

Major Advantages of Digital India

The topmost initiative of DI is to connect the villages or towns of India with high-speed internet networks. India ranks at the 2nd position internationally on the forum of digital adoption, and the digital economy is expected to cross $1 trillion by 2022.

Some of the benefits of digital India are:

  • Internet data is utilized as an effective tool for service delivery, and the penetration of the Internet in urban regions has increased to 64%.
  • Building digital villages by establishing well-equipped amenities such as LED assembly units, Wi-Fi Choupal, solar lighting, and sanitary napkin production units.
  • The Bharat Net programme has linked around 1.15 lakh Gram Panchayats using an optical fibre network of 2, 74,246 km.
  • Electronic transactions have shown an increase, which is associated with E-Governance.
  • The National e-Governance Project of the Indian Government has formed a Common Service Center (CSC) that offers access to ICT or information and communication technology.
  • CSCs deliver multimedia range correlated to digital education, entertainment, health, e-governance, and private and Government services, with the help of computers and the Internet.

Impact of Digital India

The digital India project, after its launch in 2015, was able to influence diverse domains.

  • Digital India plan could raise GDP to $1 trillion by 2025.
  • There has been growth in the education and healthcare sectors such as National Digital Health Mission.
  • Advancements in online infrastructure would improve the overall country's economy.
  • The Make in India initiative has enhanced the electronic manufacturing sector in India.
  • Approximately 12000 branches of post offices in rural locations have been electronically connected.

Challenges of Digital India

The digital movement in India initiated by the Government was to make the rural regions more advanced digitally. The scheme faced various challenges besides undertaking critical initiatives.

A few of the challenges of Digital India are given below.

  • Shortage of trained workforce in the digital technology domain.
  • The restricted ability of introductory smartphones for easy access to the internet.
  • Users needed to be more educated about digitalization.
  • The per day speed of the internet, including Wi-Fi hotspots, was slow compared to other developed countries.
  • Analyzing and monitoring the rising threats of digital crime with 1 million cybersecurity specialists was impossible.
  • More struggle for medium and small-scale enterprises to adapt to modern digital technology.

Digital India UPSC Preparation

Digital India UPSC topic is important for the upcoming IAS exam 2023. Theoretical questions can be asked in UPSC GS-III regarding the Digital India project. Candidates should regularly practice and revise the latest developments in Current Affairs linked to additional Government schemes for their UPSC preparation.

Digital India UPSC PDF

Candidates can also refer to the entire UPSC syllabus before preparing for the upcoming exam. The Digital India UPSC PDF notes will be advantageous to instruct the students on what questions can be put up in the Prelims and Mains exam.

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Difference Between NEFT and RTGSDifference Between Ramayana and Ramcharitmanas

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FAQs on Digital India

  • Digital India is a first-class project of the Indian Government with a concept to transform the whole country into a digitally entrusted community and knowledge economy. Digital India is also the enabler of other schemes launched by the Government of India.

  • The Indian Government undertook the Digital India campaign to create government services accessible to citizens electronically through online infrastructure advancement and also by improving internet connectivity. It seeks to empower the country digitally in the field of technology.

  • The Indian Government launched the 'Smart Cities' mission under Digital India [DI] in June 2015. Its objective was to promote sustainable and inclusive cities that offer core infrastructure and a sustainable and clean environment with the application of 'Smart' Solutions.

  • The Digital India project motto was - Power to Empower. The mission combines several opinions into one broad concept so that every part becomes a portion of the larger objective. DI programme provides smooth access to CSC or Common Service Centre in all country's localities.

  • DIGILOCKER under Digital India [DI] is made for storing and sharing necessary certificates or documents. A DIGILOCKER can be counted as a digital wallet for crucial documents. It is a Ministry of Electronics & IT (MeitY) scheme under the Digital India scheme.

  • Agencies that are involved in enabling Digital India initiatives are DST, DIPP, Department of Finance Services, DEPWD, SFAC, DAC&FW, CSC, CRIS, C-DAC, CCA, and many others. This campaign ensures that government services are provided to the citizens via numerous digital channels.

  • The pillars of Digital India project are Universal Access to Mobile connectivity, Broadband Highways, public Internet access, e-Governance, e-Kranti, Global Information, Electronics Manufacturing, IT Training for Jobs, and Early Harvest Programmes.

  • The digital movement in India initiated by the Government was to make the rural regions more advanced digitally. A few challenges are

    • Shortage of trained manpower in the digital technology domain.
    • The restricted ability of introductory smartphones for easy access to the internet.
    • Users needed to be more educated about digitization.

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