Kerala has outdone many more prosperous regions of country in providing basic amenities such as public health and education to common masses, in a recent decision, goverment cleared a project of providing high quality free internet to as many as 20 lakh poor families. These days welfare of people and web technology almost appear to be inseparable from each other.

On many occasions southern Indian states stand out among other parts of country for the excellence it exhibits quite often in one field or another. State capitals such as Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Thiruvananthapuram are telling symbols of brilliance of Indian growth story and give a close resemblance to what a modern day India appears like.

 

For instance, Kerala has outdone many more prosperous regions of country in providing basic amenities such as public health and education to common masses even in a scenario where it is known-for-all fact that our nation, far from being successful, has been crippling in this respect. Being a coastal region, and with its cosmopolitan identity owing to continual migration, Kerala state since its inception in 1956 unlike other parts of country toiled hard to deliver to its people elemental services essential for human development. Consequences of those early attempts are clearly visible in its world class universal education numbers— close to 95 per cent.

 

A recent declaration by Kerala Government to provide free high speed internet to 20 lakh poor families i.e. almost 10 million people is another remarkable and next-gen oriented resolution, for the power of web and digitalisation is already an established fact in bringing good governance and well-being to people in quite unprecedented manners. Government authorities taking reins into its own hand to assure quality internet for every citizen also establishes “the fact of absolute need of internet for all and sundry” for human development irrespective of their humble backgrounds.

 

These days welfare of people and web technology almost appear to be inseparable, for its attributes such as all-inclusiveness, quick delivery and transparency have replaced old & traditional opaque, always lagging system that is either completely away from people or selectively approachable.

 

The scheme will also connect schools and colleges as well as all government offices, which are close to 30000 locations in state, which has the potential to open-up immense number of opportunities for businesses, enterprises and work-force to engage people in new and better ways. The idea behind government taking this vital step was an understanding that ‘the entity called internet is a basic human right and it belongs to everyone’.

 

The move is sure to enhance the capability of state to take forward its programme towards improvement of education system in the state as it has to be more than literacy numbers, in fact a lot remains to be done. Beyond the basic benefits of internet, digitalisation in school education brings all sorts of benefits for everyone involved with system—

(a)           as it makes administrational processes easy for management

(b)         for teachers & students it helps in devising more engaging ways to learn

(c)           and further it helps parents and schools to communicate in real time while keeping a sound record of student performance


Similarly, this assurance of free internet to all amplifies the chances of quality enhancement of higher education and all other services and vocations. The programme as envisaged by Kerala Government is worth emulating, for World Wide Web bears no single discriminatory element in it.