Stakeholders of knowledge domain have major role in shaping India’s future: Alphons Kannamthanam

Kochi, March 23: As the country sets its eye on becoming one of the biggest digital economies of the world, it is important for stakeholders in the knowledge domain to step up their contributions to shaping the India of the future, Mr Alphons Kannamthanam, Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology, said today.

“We have got to change dramatically. We have got to work for India. We will have a big role to play in shaping the India of the future,” Mr Kannamthanam said in a special address at the valedictory session of the #FUTURE Global Digital Summit here.

The big ticket event was inaugurated by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday, and saw panel discussions and interactions featuring top business honchos, academics, technocrats and influencers for two days. Over 2,100 delegates, including 700 top executives of global technology firms attended the summit.

While leveraging the immense scope of new technology for boosting the economy, it is also important to ensure that the fruits of these penetrate down to the grassroots, which is the vision of the Union Government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said.

Noting that technology could also be leveraged for good causes, Mr Kannamthanam, who also holds the Tourism portfolio, said a promotional video recently released by his ministry on Yoga got 22 million views in less than a week.

Referring to the interface of technology in every aspect of life, the Minister dismissed reports suggesting that Aadhar exposed the people of the country to cyber risks.

Presiding over the closing session of the event, Mr Ramesh Chennithala, Leader of the Opposition in Kerala Assembly, said the state offered the most conducive investment opportunity and the entire political leadership is united to ensure this.

“There was a stigma about Kerala that every industry that came here would fail. But this is history. Kerala offers the best business and investment atmosphere today,” he said.

Dwelling on the huge social impact of digital technology which has revolutionised education, healthcare and banking sectors, Mr Chennithala said it was also important that it helps the uplift of the less privileged sections of society.

He said digital technology is of great help for public figures like him in knowing about the grievances and issues faced by the people and seeking solutions for them.

Though the digital divide in Kerala is not as wide as in other states, there is much more to be done to narrow it further, he added.

Mr. R Chandrashekhar, president of NASSCOM, said it was heartening that Kerala is taking a lead role in looking at the future by organising this summit, which has brought together the best minds from across the globe to debate and deliberate on how to move forward.

Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan, co-founder, Infosys, and Member HPIC, Kerala, said all the deliberations of the two-day summit would be compiled and submitted to both the Central and the State Governments for further action.

The speakers who addressed the closing session included Mr. Arun Kumar, Chairman and CEO of KPMG India.

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