Technology for Progress
Over the years, technological developments have revolutionised human civilisation and its processes. The degree to which it has penetrated our daily lives can be judged by the fact that a recent survey’s findings showed that in India at least nine households out of ten have mobile phones, a development which was unimaginable even a few years ago. Currently, India is second only to China in terms of mobile phone users. Further, the country consumes the highest monthly mobile data per person in the world. Furthermore, the average time spent on a mobile phone by a user in India has been increased from 3.7 hours to 4.5 hours per day. All these statistics prove that India is now fully prepared for the next digital revolution which can potentially make life easier and also open new vistas towards progress and prosperity, helping transform the country radically wherein poverty and unemployment could be a thing of the past. To achieve this, we need rigorous planning in-order to plug the loopholes which still exist in preventing the use of technology for the benefit of the people.
In this regard, we must first make digital facilities available in every nook and corner of the country. Thus far, quality digital services are mostly limited to urban and semi-urban areas, while rural citizens are still coping with primitive technology. The chink in the digital amour was exposed during the pandemic, when a large number of students suffered greatly as they could not attain online classes owing to poor digital connectivity. Reports such as students climbing trees or scaling heights to get better signal, and other similar incidents came to light during the period. Undoubtedly, poor connectivity has caused irreparable damage as those in rural areas have been circumstantially forced to lag behind their classmates. Such a situation could easily have been averted if enough urgency was given at the beginning towards connecting rural and remote areas with mainland India. As a matter of fact, this was required not only for imparting quality education to students, but also to save lives during natural calamities and for the enhancement of agricultural production. To be precise, India has not been able to make full use of its digital power and with new technologies on the offing, there is very little time in our hands to gear up for the next generation digital revolution.
We must ensure that we are equipped and prepared to utilise the full potential of future technologies. It is always better to be ahead in the race, than make efforts to catch up from behind. Due to certain skewed notions, especially in regard to employment, India was late in entering the digital world. But now it has been proven beyond a doubt that automation does not snatch jobs; instead, it opens up many new employment avenues for people to excel in. If India can resolve the problem of digital disparity prevailing in the country, it can easily be the new nerve centre of the next generation digital revolution.