Good governance through the Aadhaar-enabled Payment System (AePS) has been an area of focus for the Indian government in the last four years. The government has transferred a total of around Rs 5.6 lakh crore to beneficiaries of NREGA, LPG subsidies, etc. using Aadhaar-enabled payment system (AePS).
‘In addition, we are currently facilitating 9.1 crore electronic transactions such as passport services, land records, etc. through the e-governance portal. The government is also focusing extensively on developing BharatNet to bridge the digital divide between the urban and rural areas of the country. Out of around 2.5 lakh gram panchayats in the country, we have reached about 1.22 lakh, and our aim is to reach each and every household across all the regions,’ said Vinay Thakur, Director, Project Development, National eGovernance Division, Ministry of Electronics and IT, during a panel discussion titled ‘Digital transformation in India: Progress and challenges’ at the 27th Convergence India 2019 expo.
‘Moreover, the government has deployed more than 7,000 websites and 960 key applications on the cloud for faster delivery of services and improvements in the tech infrastructure,’ added Thakur.
The 27th Convergence India 2019 expo and conference witnessed industry leaders and government representatives discuss the most important topics and trends pertaining to areas like digitisation, fintech, telecom, IoT, cloud and big data, mobile technologies and digital transformation of India.
India is set to reach approximately $450 billion worth of transactions by 2022. The retail lending sector has the biggest untapped opportunity, and fintech will play a very important role in developing the market for digitally driven lending services. However, it will be imperative to improve digital and financial literacy to tap into the rural sector – the scale of opportunity in the rural sector is comparatively much greater than the urban markets, but fintech is more or less limited to urban areas at present.
‘There is certainly a lot we can learn from China in terms of how to boost digital transactions amongst consumers and make it widespread. But we need to realise that the industry models in China and India are vastly different. While the former has a fintech industry dominated by two conglomerates, the Indian market needs to foster multiple fintech players who should both challenge as well as collaborate with the traditional banking sector,’ emphasised Probir Roy, Co-founder, PayMate India.
The internet is a great leveller, since it brings both men and women online, which holds great significance for the growth of the digital ecosystem. Furthermore, being a part of the global economy and market, the Indian start-up ecosystem needs to be integrated with the rest of the world with a focus on creating and following good practices by itself and not just the best practices prescribed by others.
‘We need to create a workforce of the future along with adopting AI and emphasize on re-skilling the current force. The transformation that is about to take place will require higher investments towards digital capacity building. My recommendation is that we need a stable regulatory and policy environment, as well as a collaborative ecosystem comprising businesses, governments, academia, the media and citizens to achieve a successful holistic transformation of the society,’ added Subi Chaturvedi, Senior President, YES Bank.