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Digital India expansion gets Rs 14,903 crore outlay

Digital India

NEW DELHI, AUGUST 16: The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved extension of the Digital India programme with an outlay of Rs 14,903 crore to boost digital initiatives in skilling, cyber security, high performance computing and simplifying technology for masses, among other areas.
Briefing the media after the Cabinet meeting, Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said the outlay has been approved for a 5-year period between 2021-22 to 2025-26.
The extended Digital India programme will add on to the work done under the previous version of the scheme.
“The Prime Minister in the Cabinet meeting has approved the Digital India programme with an outlay of Rs 14,903 crore”, Vaishnaw said.
“6.25 lakh IT professionals will be re-skilled and up-skilled under the FutureSkills Prime Programme. 2.65 lakh persons will be trained in information security under the Information Security & Education Awareness Phase (ISEA) Programme. 540 additional services will be available under the Unified Mobile Application for New-age Governance (UMANG) app/platform. At present over 1,700 services are already available on UMANG; 9 more supercomputers will be added under the National Super Computer Mission. This is in addition to 18 supercomputers already deployed”, Vaishnaw said.
The Minister said that special attention on cyber security would be given under the extension of the Digital India programme. The outlay will also enable cyber-awareness courses for 12 crore college students and new initiatives in the area of cyber security, including development of tools and integration of more than 200 sites with the National Cyber Coordination Centre, he added.
Vaishnaw said that ‘Bhashini’, the artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled multi-language translation tool (which is currently available in 10 languages) would be rolled out in all 22 Schedule 8 languages under the Digital India programme.
He said that the outlay will also enable modernisation of the National Knowledge Network (NKN), which connects 1,787 educational institutions. The digital document verification facility under DigiLocker will now be available to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and other organisations, he added.
‘PM-eBus Sewa’
The Union Cabinet also approved ‘PM-eBus Sewa’ for augmenting city bus operation under which 10,000 e-buses will be deployed across cities in the country.
Briefing reporters, Union Minister Anurag Thakur said the decision will improve public transport in cities and is also in line with India’s objectives concerning climate change.
“PM e-Bus Seva has been given approval. Rs 57,613 crores will be spent on this. Around 10,000 new electric buses will be provided across the country”, he said.
The scheme will cover cities of 3 lakh and above population and priority will be given to cities not having organised bus services.
‘7 Multi-tracking Projects’
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi today approved 7 projects of Ministry of Railways with estimated cost of around Rs.32,500 crore, with 100% funding from Central Government. The proposals of multi-tracking will ease operations and reduce congestion, providing the much required infrastructural development on the busiest sections across Indian Railways.
The projects covering 35 Districts in 9 States, namely Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Odisha, Jharkhand and West Bengal will increase the existing network of Indian Railways by 2339 Kms. and will provide employment of 7.06 crore man-days to the people of the States. (PTI)