Bharat Nirman Kendras to bridge digital divide

Rajasthan CM Gehlot calls for a change in mindset to deliver e-governance


Pratap Vikram Singh | February 11, 2013

With Bharat Nirman Rajiv Gandhi Kendras, Rajasthan is creating a platform for taking information technology to villages and thus bridge the digital divide.

"In order to bridge the digital divide and to extend the benefits of IT to villages, Bharat Nirman Rajiv Gandhi Kendras are being established in 9,177 gram panchayats at a total cost Rs 1,100 crore. Rajasthan is the front-runner in this initiative. These Kendras will house kisan Sewa Kendras and village knowledge centres," said chief minister Ashok Gehlot.

"Three percent of the budget of Rajasthan has been allocated to e-governance; good governance is not possible without e-governance," he said at the 16th national e-governance conference held in Jaipur today. He hailed the theme of the conference: "open governance".

Gehlot stressed the need of education to avail full benefits of IT in simplifying one's work today and in understanding the working of the government with the use of technology. "RTI was first launched in Rajasthan and now is a revolution in the country.  The government secrecy will now make way for transparency," he said.

IT can be used to curb the migration of villagers to the cities by providing all the services available in the cities to the villagers; according to Gehlot, with the guaranteed public service delivery guarantee Act, all the citizens of Rajasthan will be able to avail the benefits of public services in Rajasthan. "The public service delivery guarantee Act will be further strengthened," he said.

Gehlot lamented the mindset of officers and executives in Rajasthan a section of who, according to him, has been reluctant to acknowledge change in governance. "We need to change that; that is why we have started training the students from now. I have sanctioned Rs 165 crore for laptops of 1,76,000 students to create an IT environment in the state," said Gehlot.

He said that the launch of the National e-Governance Plan (NeGP) signifies that the governments have to move at a fast pace in the future. "We need to create interest. Many schemes and district level courses have been started for students on e governance in the state for the purpose," he said.

He spoke of the need for debate and discussion on the role of technology in today's changing scenario of governance in the country. "There will be discussions on the theme of e governance for two days and hopefully we will come up with some good suggestions," said Gehlot.



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