Kerala State Government has released the Draft IT policy to upgrade the productivity, skill and knowledge levels of the citizens of Kerala, India.
Under the proposal, the establishment of an International Centre for Free Software and Computing for Development, ITES Training Centre (in Kochi) and extension of Internet to all educational institutions and villages by 2010. Government is planning to set about 3000 broadband enabled information hubs, named Akshaya e-Centres in different states of the state. The State Government will support and expand Technopark in Thiruvananthapuram and Infopark in Kochi on its own accord and in partnership with private infrastructure providers. Government will focus on e-Governance, free software and development of appropriate technologies. The State will network with national and international organisations and industry for research and development in ICT and knowledge sharing. The policy is mainly focused on Free and Open Source Software (FOSS), which would be used in e-Governance projects. Open standards like Unicode and Open Document Format and Open Architectures would be followed in e-Governance projects to avoid total dependence on select vendors. The Government has proposed to develop the State as the FOSS destination in the country. It will provide special incentives to companies developing FOSS. The Government will make use of all the media tools and emerging technologies to ensure proper communication between the Government and the citizen. The Government will promote the use of Web sites, e-mails and other news communication facilities in various Government and semi-Government organisations.