If you talk to any Indian or talk to yourself about India, sooner or later you will end up about talking about flaws in governance which lead to leakages of lakhs of crores of rupees. This time we are fortunate enough to have a government who talks about these issues almost as much as we do. Other than focusing on the major pillars like agriculture and farmer welfare, rural sector, social sector, education, skill, job creation, infrastructure, financial sector reforms, ease of doing business, tax reforms, fiscal discipline the government is spending most of its time trying to improve governance.
The process of governance has six steps. First the government must find the person for whom a particular scheme is made. After finding the person, the government has to empower the person. To empower the person and give the person benefits, the government has to reach the person. In the process of reaching out to the person the government has to minimize leakages, record and secure everything. The last step is to scale it up. The problem is that there is a problem in each step. Wrong people take benefits, subsidies are stolen by middle men, people are never identified properly, complex processes delay everything, records are incomplete or missing.
Government has given 2,66,691.84 crore rupees in subsidies in 2014-15 and most of this money was leaked. For example, in Bihar 92.4% of the food grains and essential commodities were diverted. 67% of the total stock of the public distribution system was diverted last year in our country. The present government has taken this problem very seriously and that is what I will be writing about in my blog today.
Due to the fact that we need a comprehensive approach to fix the various problems in governance it is obvious that technology is the key. The integration of technology in the government processes is called e-governance. Due to a fundamental change in technology in the past 5 years, the entire model has to change. The present government realizes this as much as we do and hence has launched a very ambitious project called the digital India program. The nine pillars of the programme include broadband highways, public internet access program, information for everyone, early harvest programmes, universal access to phones, IT for jobs and eKranti (electronic delivery of services), Electronic manufacturing and finally E-governance.
The programme required a massive grassroots implementation of basic processes, for example replacing multiple old systems of identification like ration cards, passports, voter ID, driving license, etc.
The picture above is Indian governments technical strategy. It is not easy to understand because of the number of components involved, but it must be appreciated due to the amount of thought put behind it and the amount of possibilities it will bring to the table in the near future. Its key components on the soft infrastructural side include Electronic sign, Jan Dhan Yojana, Aadhar, Mobile, Unified Payment Interface, Digilocker, Navik, Digital India and Biometrically Authenticated Physical Uptake or BAPU.
Example of the possibilities created are as follows. A farmer has to go from his village to the city to sell his stock to the middle men there and get exploited to sell his stock every time he had something to sell, but soon all he will have to do is take out his mobile and tell the department about the stock he or she has. The government will take it from his land and the farmer would get money immediately in his bank account, leaving no space for corruption or malpractices as everything is digitally being done and hence being recorded.
The government has focused a lot on India stack. To understand it we should first understand what uber did and did not do. It did not make the maps, google made them, it did not make the payment methods, MasterCard and visa made them. It did not even make the GPS and satellites. All it did was assembling these components to make a fascinating product. Although there must be a lot of effort put behind to make it the company it is today, it is a fact that uber had most of its component made before hand. India stack is the exact same thing. They want to give app developers all the components before hand and hence is providing so many possibilities, it is truly fascinating.
The next thing that amazed me was digilocker. Using digilocker you can just go on an app to apply for jobs and when they ask you to provide certificates, all you will have to do is access your digilocker account where you will find all your certificates, IDs, etc. and tick on the ones you want to submit.
You will be shocked like me when you get to know that there are companies who tell other companies how much a person lied when applying to the company. They provide a percentage of how much the person lied and recommend those who lie less than 27% because average lying rates are 79%. Mr. Modi is changing this by introducing digilocker. These examples were just to tell you how deeply our present government is thinking about small and big issues.
This is how things are going to change in almost everything and you are perhaps going to work in a world where this would have already become a reality. You have to prepare yourselves for this world, so learn hacking and new methods of frauds otherwise your future is very delicate and risky. This was a joke, nowadays it is important to specify that you are joking, if you learnt nothing from this blog today, at least learn this.
There must be 3 questions in your mind right now which I have not addressed yet because right now I am at a very superficial level and you people want to murder me when I write blogs of over 3000 words. The first question you must have is, What about illiterates? The government is taking that very seriously and has many new schemes for them, but there is a fact which the government agrees to, the future is not for illiterates.
Second question you must have is what if someone hacks into the servers? We cannot afford to loose this opportunity for something as menial as a possibility of someone hacking into the government websites and servers. It is a fact that every time someone has hacked into big data there is a new layer of security made which is much stronger than before.
Third question is that how will people know about the schemes? One-line answer: You will get a popup on your phone if you are the person the scheme was made for.
Using these schemes, the government aims to create a cashless economy one day so that corruption, black money and income tax problems are over. According to me, we are fortunate to have such a visionary government.