Intel launches initiative to create digital villages

Hyderabad: Global IT giant Intel on Wednesday launched a centre in a Telangana village under a new initiative aimed at working with the governments of various states to create a blueprint for digitisation of rural India.

The first such Digital India Unnati Kendra under the initiative “Ek Kadam Unnati Ki Aur” has come up in Nadimpalle village in Mahabubnagar district.

It will be used to create the framework for the Telangana model digital village.

Besides providing various citizen services under the Telangana government’s e-panchayat programme, the centre will provide devices, relevant local content and training for citizens thereby creating opportunities for development and empowerment.

The centre is training 800 people in the village in digital literacy. Intel is also distributing among households its product PC on a stick which converts a television into a computer.

The centre is also providing content through Intel’s partners.

Intel has roped in Micromax, HP, Snapdeal and Shweta Computers and Peripherals as partners for the initiative. They will contribute through their content, solutions, products and services.

Gregory R. Pearson, senior vice president and general manager for sales and marketing group of Intel Corporation, Debjani Ghosh, vice president of sales and marketing group and managing director of Intel South Asia, launched the centre at an event held here.

Papa Rao, advisor to the state government, local legislator G. Balaraju and Jayesh Ranjan, secretary for information technology of the Telangana government, were present on behalf of the state government.

Debjani Ghosh said Intel would work with 10 states to create a blueprint to drive technology enabled transformation at the grassroots. She said the company was in talks with various state governments.

An Intel team will be meeting Delhi’s information technology minister Manish Sisodia on Thursday to hold talks on the partnership.

“Unless we are able to take technology to rural India and make it relevant so that citizens are actually able to get benefit out of it, Digital India will not be a reality,” she said.

She said technology will not be magic but the magic will be how it is used to create more jobs and create more impact in terms of development.

Jayesh said the government has already set up 100 e-panchayats, offering various citizen services to people in the villages.

It plans to have e-panchayats in all 8,750 village panchayats in the state. They will also offer banking and insurance services besides working as a platform to train famers and provide coaching for job aspirants.

The official said the state government was also ready to work with other companies under the digital Telangana programme.