Memoranda for Submission to the Chief Ministers of the Two Telugu States.


Progress for Digital Transformation


Progress for Digital Transformation

Dr T.H.Chowdary*


Information and knowledge empower people. Scientists and engineers  have been discovering and inventing devices to collect , store and communicate information on an increasingly mass scale  and worldwide.

2. The telegraph was invented by Samuel Morse in 1844 . The International Telegraph Union (ITU) was founded in 1865.  Telephone,  radio, television and communication satellites  were invented later in 1876, 1895, 1927 and 1962 respectively.

3. Since 1969, 17th of May is celebrated as World Telecommunications Day; it was renamed as World Telecommunications & Information Society Day in 2006, to take into account the symbiotic development of telecoms and information technologies leading world’s peoples into information (and knowledge) societies.  The theme for the year 2023 WT&IS Day on 17 May is, “Empowering the least developed countries (LDCs) through Information and  Communications Technologies (ICTs)”.  Besides the LDCs , even in developing and developed countries there are  tens of millions of   economically and educationally under-developed , below poverty  line (BPL), powerless people.  So, helping, and empowering (at least) 20% of such India’s people must be a subject of deliberation in India on this day.

4. India is increasingly becoming a welfare state as directed in Part-IV of our Constitution’s Directive Principles .  The poor and powerless population of our country must be enabled to benefit by the  “digitalization” programs.  In this, the Departments of Telecoms (DOT); Electronics & I.T (DE & IT); the  I.T and telephone companies ( Telcos) must co-operate and provide the finances required to equip and skill the  poor to get empowered by ICTs and digitalization.


5.   Quite a good amount of money is required to put smart telephones in the hands of the BPL persons and to train them to use them and enabling the  BPL citizens to benefit from the new technologies. Together with the governments direct benefit transfers   to Jan Dhan Accounts, government’s aim of  Sab Ka Vikas can be realized.  The money required can come from the following sources.

·         The balances in the Universal Service Fund the DOT is collecting from the telecom companies  is one such resource.

·         The second is the money realized from radio spectrum auctions.  Actually,  the spectrum is not created by the DOT/ government.  It is created and used without exhausting by the  Telcos.  DOT/ GOI selling/ auctioning what it does not create and hence  not own  is unethical.  Therefore the bulk of spectrum  auction receipts shall be the second  source of funds.

·         A third source must be a portion of the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds  of Telcos and I.T companies.


6. These three sources together can provide  all the funds needed to equip the poor with I-phones and skill-train them in their use to gain and use information and  technology to get empowered. The Telcos ( & IT companies) must be obligated  to give specified amount of data and  talk time free to the  qualified poor. Aadhar and white ration cards may be the basis for recognition  to entitlement. The Ministry of  Skill Development of the  Government of India can be entrusted  with the task of equipping  and skilling the  BPL  people.


7.  Finally, the Directive Principles ( Articles in Part IV of the  Constitution) are to be progressively legislated to realise the aspirations ideated in the  phrases.  “Sabka Vikas, Sabka Prayas and Sabka Saath ”.  ICTs / digitalization must empower and  promote bhagidari among all Bharatiyas and  we so live and strive to:

Krinvato viswamaaryam

Sahanav Bhunaktu

Saha veeryam karavaavahai

(571 words)