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Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Electronics & IT
30 NOV 2021 5:54PM by PIB Delhi
DAY 2: AZADI KA DIGITAL MAHOTSAV

In continuation of the celebration of Azadi Ka Digital Mahotsav week from Nov 29 - Dec 5, the first session of day 2 started with an insightful panel discussion on leveraging AI to build solutions for the public good at population scale. AI is poised to bring significant societal transformations, inclusive growth and empowerment of all. Driven by our Prime Minister’s vision of an AatmaNirbhar Bharat, Digital India is paving the way forward to fulfil our PM’s vision of a rising new India, where technology has the power to unleash the vast potential of our citizens, and improve their lives, bringing in transparency and inclusive development.

The panellists of the session included Prof. K. VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Advisor, Government of India, Shri Ajay Prakash Sawhney, Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Shri Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Information Technology, Electronics and Communication, Government of Telangana, Shri Prakash Kumar, CEO, Wadhwani Institute of Technology and Policy and was moderated by Shri Abhishek Singh, President & CEO, NeGD& DIC. This panel discussion shed light on the experiences of the central government, state governments and industry partners while building scalable AI solutions and related infrastructure, challenges faced, and the opportunities they see ahead for India.

Prof. VijayRaghavan commenced the discussion by shedding light on the important role of government institutions in creating an ecosystem of responsible AI innovation through enabling policies and regulations. Prof. Raghavan also emphasized on the various initiatives being undertaken as part of the AI mission of PM-STAIC to broaden the field of AI research in India through Industry-Academia collaborations and the importance of using data in the day-to-day decision making by government agencies.

Shri JayeshRanjan spoke about the Telangana AI Mission and the frameworks and institutional mechanisms adopted in various focus areas to enable AI, including capacity building, governance, compute power and support to start-ups. He spoke about the use of AI in the Saagu-Baagu project to bring innovation in agriculture in Telangana, along with key uses of AI in e-Governance.

Shri Abhishek Singh emphasized on the importance of scaling up these use-cases at a national level and creating connected governments. He also shed light on the role that MeitY and National E-Governance Division is playing in enabling this vision.

Shri Prakash Kumararticulated the need for a skilling and capacity building program at different levels of bureaucracy and how that would enable the use of these emerging technologies within government agencies to assist policy making, improve service delivery mechanisms and improve internal performance monitoring. He also shed light on some of the typical challenges in implementing large scale digital programs and how to mitigate them.

Shri Ajay Prakash Sawhney concluded the discussion by stressing on the importance of building nation-wide digital programs that are amalgamated, integrated, and focused on delivering quality services to all Indian citizens, from healthcare to education. He also emphasized on the importance of building AI solutions that focus on inclusive growth for all 1.3 Billion Indians, leveraging our strength of scale.

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RKJ/M