Question : Capacity Building in IT

(a) whether the Government has made a road-map for capacity building in the field of rural IT infrastructure;
(b) if so, the details thereof; and
(c) the steps taken to strengthen the digital education in rural areas particularly among the rural youths?

Answer given by the minister

(a) to (c): Yes, Sir. The Government of India has undertaken following initiatives for capacity building in field of rural IT infrastructure:

i) National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN): The Government has approved, ''National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN)/BharatNet'' , to establish network infrastructure to connect all the Gram Panchayats (2.5 lakh) in the country by laying incremental fibre to bridge the connectivity gap between Gram Panchayats and Blocks or through radio/satellite for providing broadband connectivity. It is being implemented through a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL). Till June,2016 more than 50,465 Gram Panchayats (GPs) have been connected with OFC.

ii) Under Digital India programme, the Government has launched CSC 2.0 Scheme to set up at least one Common Service Centre (CSC) to cover all the 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats of the Country for delivery of various electronic services to citizens across rural India. This would include strengthening and integrating the existing 100,000 CSCs under the original CSC scheme and making operational an additional 1.5 lakh CSCs in Gram Panchayats. The Project is to be implemented over a period of 4 years. Till June,2016 a total number of 1,22,793 CSCs have been rolled out at Gram Panchayat level.

iii) The Government is implementing following schemes for providing digital education and literacy to the masses (including rural India):

(a) Department of Electronics & Information Technology ( DeitY) is implementing a project viz; “Course on Computer Education in Rural India” for Training and Certification of one lakh Common Service Centre (CSC) Operators/ Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLE) in every state of the country with financial support of Rs. 750.00 lakh through National Institute of Electronics and Information Technology (NIELIT), an autonomous society under DeitY. Under this project, a total of 1,00,000 VLEs are targeted for Course on Computer Concepts (CCC) by March, 2017.

(b) DeitY is implementing a project viz; “Empowering Women in Rural India through Digital Literacy (WDLP) with an outlay of Rs. 287.50 lakh through NIELIT, with an aim at training and empowering 25,000 rural women. The training and examination of 25,000 women has been completed.

(c) National Digital Literacy Mission (NDLM) scheme was approved in March 2014 with an aim to train 10 lakh person with a total budget outlay of Rs. 97.02 crore.

(d) Digital Empowerment of citizens by providing Universal Digital Literacy is an integral component of the vision of ''Digital India'' initiative. Keeping this in view, a scheme entitled ''Digital Saksharta Abhiyan'' (DISHA) to make 42.5 lakh persons digitally literate in selected households throughout the country was approved in December 2014.

Both the above schemes on digital literacy are being implemented concurrently and so far around 72.92 lakh candidates have been trained and approximately 33.15 lakh candidates have been certified. A total of 1952 training partners are involved under these schemes. Out of these Training Partners/ Training Centres, around 57% exist in rural areas (including nearly 30,000 CSCs).

(e) A scheme to make 6 crore rural households digitally literate has also been drawn up in the current financial year.

iv) A scheme for setting up/upgrading of NIELIT centres is also under implementation to cover rural and remote parts of the country in J&K and North East (NE). The Scheme entails setting up of 10 new extension centres and upgradation of 8 existing centres in NE. One extension centre in Leh district of J&K has also been setup.


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