1. What are the key challenges in using digital solutions to address poverty and associated issues? Illustrate. (10 Marks)
गरीबी और संबंधित मुद्दों के समाधान के लिए डिजिटल का उपयोग करने में प्रमुख चुनौतियाँ क्या हैं? चित्रण करें।
Candidates need to write about poverty and related issues which government is trying to curb. Candidates have to link and write about challenges in curbing such issues with use of digital solutions.
Reducing poverty has become an international concern as SDG 1 targets to end poverty in all its forms everywhere. Still a big part of the population in india is living Below the Poverty Line. As per Tendulkar Committee this estimation is around 21.9% of the total population of the country.
- Digital divide: Even in the era of science and technology, there is still huge gap exists between users and nonusers of e-govt. services. In fact, in India, majority of the masses, who living below poverty line and they deprived of govt. services. In contrast, some portion of people are immensely using the e-services of government . However, this gap needs to be made narrow, then only ,the benefits of e-governance would be utilized equally.
- Use of local language: The access of information must be permitted in the language most comfortable to the public user, generally the local language. There already exist technologies such as GIST and language software by which transliteration from English into other languages can be made.
- Information: Reliability of the digitally published information when rules, regulations, and requirements get changed on daily basis remains questionable.
- Communication: The absence of interpersonal communication with and by the governmental agencies can leave many stakeholders unattended and disappointed.
- Infrastructure: Before Internet literacy, Internet infrastructure to interconnect computers and users on the Internet is an essential requirement. This infrastructure includes physical hardware, transmission media, and software; without this, e-governance is a remote service.
- Gender Divide: Women are still lagging. Men are 90% more likely to own a mobile phone than women. Even among women owning mobile phones they have no access to internet connectivity.
- Burden on poor: Digital “solutions” create additional bureaucracy for all sick persons in search of these services without disciplining the culprits. Along with paper work, patients will have to navigate digi-work. Platform- and app-based solutions can exclude the poor entirely, or squeeze their access to scarce health services further.
Hence, if these challenges are addressed carefully then it will not just only help to achieve better success for e-governance but also will ensure improvement in governance processes and outcomes with a view to improve the delivery of public services to citizens. The resultant benefits are less corruption, increased transparency, greater convenience, revenue growth, and cost reductions.