Thursday, February 9, 2023

Govt envisions making Nagaland next IT hub of S.Asia: Kikon


The state government has a vision to make Nagaland as the next IT Hub of Southeast Asia, said Advisor information technology & communication, science & technology and NRE, Mmhonlumo Kikon. Speaking at the 8th edition of the e-Naga Summit 2022 at the directorate of IT&C, here Wednesday,
Kikon said Nagaland today has enabled 47 eServices through eDistrict project and all the departments have websites hosted in the state data centre.
The summit held on the theme “Towards promotion of secured digital services and investment opportunities in the State of Nagaland” was organized by the Department of Information Technology & Communication in collaboration with Indo British Business Forum (IBBF), United Kingdom.
The advisor stated that the summit envisions to build the foundation required to identify the existing gaps, incubate ideas and devise solutions specifically in digital services and opening up of investment opportunities in the state.
He said it also aims to explore, promote and facilitate all possible investment opportunities for development in the State.
Kikon informed that state government has enabled various citizen-centric services through efficient management of government employee and salary disbursement through Personnel Information Management System (PIMS). He said it has also developed its own common scholarship portal, which has eliminated various loopholes like duplication of scholarship and delay in payment of scholarship leading to transparency and accountability.
Advisor said that Nagaland has a Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), which has been designated as a Centre of excellence in Computer Graphic Application. He said entrepreneurs and start-ups were accommodated in the centre.
Further, he informed that Nagaland has implemented a biometric attendance system in all government offices in the state capital. Kikon said state departments like power department has already implemented ERP systems in day-to-day work, adding that more departments would come forward in implementing ERP systems.
Advisor asserted that survival of the fittest was not linked to size or strength but to the ability to change, to move quickly, adapt, seize opportunities and be agile. He exuded confidence that the e-Summit would explore the various options available for securing existing digital Services and building new secure digital services for citizens of the State.
With the increased adoption of e-services in the state, advisor stressed the need to transfer applications from on-premises to cloud, which moves security controls from centralized gateways and regional hubs to the cloud. He added that policies could be enforced consistently across the platform.
In her address, IBBF CEO, Kavita Sharma, said the forum was an opportunity-based private firm that looks for opportunities to bring investments to India. She said the forum was committed to bringing investments in India.
According to Kavita Sharma, India of India and UK government would be signing a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) worth 52 billion pounds, wherein for the first time, UK fruits would enter India without any duty and vice-versa. She added that Nagaland fruits like Kiwi, pineapple and dragon fruit could be brought in.
She also informed that IBBF was keen to invest in the power sector, renewable energy and road sector. She citied instances of road from Kohima to Dimapur, which needed investment since even as Nagaland was free from pollution, there was a lot more to be done as basic infrastructure was not available.
In his keynote address, principal secretary IT&C, KD Vizo, said Nagaland picked up information and technology lately around 2014 owing to financial constraints though the department was created in 2004. However, he said that when the awareness was created starting from politicians, bureaucrats and then the youth, the youth picked well and received massive response.
Vizo said that bringing information technology and e-governance culture was related to promotion of transparency, accountability and efficiency.
However, he said it was not just about technology, but had to change the mindset of the people, bring e-culture, change the society and work culture in bureaucracy, adding that this has been the biggest challenges that have been witnessed.
Vizo informed that the recognition received by the department showed that the government and people were ready to embrace e-governance to move ahead with the rest of the world.
Further, he said that banking agencies and even CSRs have been restricted except in health, education and agriculture sector. He stated that even during the union finance minister’s visit, many IT companies arrived Nagaland, but none were interested to invest in IT sector. He maintained that Nagaland has well adapted in IT culture and there were plenty of youth having computer science, electronic graduates and engaged in business.
In this digital age, Vizo said IT has to be secure and safe. He, therefore, said that all efforts were on to ensure digital services.
Vizo also appreciated IBBF UK for their keen interest to invest in Nagaland. He said that for the first time, Nagaland was witnessing a serious player in the investment sector.
Though Nagaland was economically weak, the principal secretary said the state was strong in social capital as any other country in the world.
He said that the confidence that Nagas instilled in guest visitors was not seen everywhere in the world. Vizo, therefore, said that any investments coming to Nagaland would be of great help and would enhance the lives of the people.
After the second session, a discussion was held on investment potential in Nagaland and secured digital services in Nagaland.

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