Digital India is a journey that begins with the installation of transaction systems, says Sudipta K Sen, Regional Director – South East Asia, Vice Chairman and Board Member, SAS India, in conversation with Rachita Jha of Elets News Network (ENN)
What is the digital readiness of organisations to reap the real benefits of data analytics in India, especially in the government sector?
The last 10 years have been transformational and we have seen significant growth in terms of volume and diversity of industries adopting digitisation of data with conviction in results. Earlier, traditionally most of the digitised data was only available with banks, telecom companies and selectively few manufacturing and fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies. But now across every walk of life, data is getting digital and the government sector has caught up with the trend as well. Even within the government, we initially had some progressive departments that had begun on the path of data digitisation, like Income Tax, among other statistics- dependent domains.
Today, when we see across every state and most of the key departments with transactional function, they have taken to data analytics to drive most of their business and citizen-centric services. When the entire revenue management system of the government departments across various states have majority of their transactions in the digital form, it translates into direct earning and identification or revenue leaks. This is a boon for the state economy as their collection transactions come at the forefront in a digital form and can then derive insights and foresights from them to take corrective action.
What are your views on the ‘Digital India’ campaign announced by the Central Government?
Digital India is a framework, it is a journey that begins with installation of transaction systems that can provide digital data, and then we add customised analytical tools to this data set that confer intelligence capabilities to process the data into intelligence reports based on the specific needs of the department. In pursuit of ‘Digital India’, every citizen of India should be recognised as an individual entity by the Government.
In this direction, the National Population Registry (NPR) Card, or the Adhaar Card that recognises the identity as a citizen of India, can act as a single point of identity and information source. With this single identity card, every citizen should have their ration card, passport, driving license and other such services tagged that will create an ability with the Government to be informed about the citizen regardless of the physical presence. These will enable better policing and surveillance as at the end of the day all the aspects of citizen services are interlinked and can be made available. Thus, the journey of digitisation via Digital India is a great beginning – it is a strong business case for the Government Departments to identify the gaps or bottlenecks. Also, it will be a enabler for inclusive growth for all the Government Schemes for the marginalised sections of the society. It will ensure that benefits will reach the beneficiary only including those below the poverty line.
Which key Government departments can avail the maximum benefits of a data analytic tool?
The monetary benefits of data analytics are best reaped by the Departments that are earning revenue for the Government, including Income Tax, Transport and Finance etc. Apart from that, Departments of Education and Health can also avail maximum advantage of an analytic engine sitting behind their data to analyse schemes and outcomes for the citizens. Analytics can play a pivotal role in designing and monitoring of smart cities. We have modules for smart power that has features of grid management in terms of predicting the traffic patterns, surveillance hotspots, and decision-making based on city demographics.