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|September 29, 1998||
Gujarat unveils IT policyGujarat Chief Minister Keshubhai Patel has announced an information technology policy and made a special provision of Rs 500 million as a preliminary allotment for its implementation.
Patel told reporters in the state capital of Gandhinagar that soon an autonomous organisation called the Gujarat Informatics Limited would be formed for the implementation and development of the IT policy.
Patel said that the policy has also been introduced with a view to connect the state capital with the talukas. Initially, the capital would connect to district headquarters. Subsequently, the district headquarters would connect to the taluka headquarters.
Patel said that the state seeks to achieve connectivity of all government offices to the capital by 2001.
The policy says that the government will ensure that all forms are available on computers by 2005.
All the departments will prepare their information technology plan and a single chief information officer would look after them. The CIO would report directly to the secretary of the department.
All departments would also be given email facility. Each department would be asked to create a Web page within the state government's Web site. The pages would have to display grievances handling procedure.
Private-sector participation in the information technology initiative has also encouraged for setting up IT training facilities. The policy suggests that government servants be trained to use computers and incentives be given to those who excel in related areas.
Patel said the policy suggests that basic knowledge of office computing should be made compulsory for recruits in government services. It has also suggested that computer education should be made compulsory in all schools from class five and Internet facility would also be made available in these schools by 2001.
The state has also decided to set up an IT industry at Gandhinagar by 2000 on a plot of 200 acre. By 2003 at similar industries would be set up at Surat and Rajkot.
The policy suggested that the state government would set up venture capital funds for development of IT services and this fund would seek support from the national fund for IT ventures' development as proposed by National Task Force on Information Technology.
Patel said that the policy envisages creation of enormous new employment facilities so as to ensure proliferation of IT. The government has decided to create an information corridor through information kiosks to make government-citizen interface more effective, efficient and transparent.
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