IT can benefit rural India: expert
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IT can benefit rural India: expert

By India Abroad News Service   |   Thursday, 26 December 2002, 08:00 Hrs
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PATNA: Contrary to popular image, IT can be of immense help to the poor and rural masses, an expert with the National Informatics Centre (NIC) said here.

"IT can prove a boon if the development process is connected through IT and people get information at their doorstep, that too without paying a bribe," said Sahid Ahmed.

He was speaking at a conference on "e-Readiness: Expectations of Rural Masses".

About 70 percent of India's one billion people live in 600,000 villages, which presently have little access to IT.

Other experts agreed with Ahmed, saying it was time to make IT rural friendly.

"This can be achieved only when each village panchayat is provided with an Internet connection, from which the rural population can get information regarding cultivation, healthcare, education and employment," said Saurabh Gupta of NIC.

Sailesh Kumar Srivastava, another expert in the field, said IT's potential for rural development was large and it could help change the face of India.

People in rural areas will manage to know about agricultural resources like rice, wheat and vegetables, hydrological resources like water bodies, mineral resources like ore mines and coal, forest resources and geological resources, Srivastava said.

"Of various technologies that can assist economic development, telecommunication plays a vital role," he said.

According to IT experts, there is an urgent need to go for innovative projects to uplift the rural people using IT.

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