Chief Minister Pema Khandu called on Union Minister of IT and Electronics Ravi Shankar Prasad today to discuss on issues of Information technology.
Pema briefed the Union Minister that Arunachal Pradesh has also accorded top priority to e Governance and efforts are being made to realise this by making the entire State Civil Secretariat paperless in the days to come. He believed that with the help of information technology the state government would ensure transparency and accountability in Governance.
He however admitted the fact that the state has been lagging behind in terms of IT and Telecom infrastructure due to rugged and inaccessible terrain, Low road density and such other reasons. Pema requested the IT and telecom ministry to support the state government to do a massive augmentation in the sector. Pema requested for a special package to augment Telecom Infrastructure, not only to improve services but to meet the need of connectivity required for GST implementation. CM also suggested for a policy to subsidize the bandwidth charges in Arunachal Pradesh which would act as an incentive for the private service providers and encourage them to invest in Arunachal Pradesh.
CM Khandu also pointed out that the Mission Mode projects such as e District, Swan and State Data Centre are yet to take off due to host of reasons including limited participation in bids. He sought the Minister’s personal intervention to fast track and operationalizes these projects.
Citing that the present model of Common Service Centre (CSC) scheme and even the proposed CSC 2.0 is not viable in Arunachal Pradesh in backdrop of less population, less transaction, unreliable connectivity and limited G2C services, CM appealed the Ministry to devise a special mechanism to make these CSCs viable.
CM further opined for an interim measure to resolve the connectivity issues by providing VSATs with solar power backup facilities. These VSATs will be installed at 100 administrative centres. Wifi hotspot will be created using these VSATs for public access, he suggested while requesting the ministry to consider funding for atleast 100 VSATs.
He also requested to upscale and expand NIC and SEMT with more manpower for Arunachal Pradesh.
After giving a patient hearing, Union Minister assured the CM that Arunachal Pradesh would be accorded utmost priority. All out support would be extended to the state in IT and telecom sector.
He revealed that the Union Government contemplates to bring a revolution through CSC model. All schemes, programmes of central as well as state would be linked with CSC so that direct benefit is reaped by genuine beneficiaries. Ravi Shankar Prasad assured CM that the Ministry will strengthen telecom and IT services in the state so that all the populace of the state reaps the benefits of Government.
CM was accompanied by DyCM, Chief Secretary, Principal Secretary and Commissioner Finance during the call on.