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The Prime Minister of India, Mr Narendra Modi is keen to develop India. More than anything, he envisions to make India digitalised. His campaign – Digital India, which was launched on the first week of July, plans to reduce paperwork and also connect 2,50,000 villages across India. We already told you about Panchgaon village getting free access to Wifi. Well, Panchgaon is not the only village.
Akodara village in Sabarkantha district, Gujarat is the first digital village of India.
Akodara is a slice of digital vision that Mr. Modi has envisioned for every village of India. ICICI Bank helped this village become one under the project ‘Digital Village’. This village of 1200 people was helped by this bank so that people can see the revolutionary change in the digital future of India and also the vision that this bank entails for the future India.
Located in Sabarkantha district in Gujarat and with just 220 families (1200 people) residing in this village, this village sees cattle rearing and farming as the chief occupation. When Mr Narendra Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he opened the country’s first animal hostel.
Why is Akodara a digital village?
1. The highlighting aspect is that it follows Cashless ecosystem because of which, nobody has to carry any kind of cash to buy things. Be it mandi, shops, cooperative society or milk producer group – everyone follows Cashless ecosystem. Also, almost every adult has a saving account.
2. The schools and the village have CCTV cameras installed.
3. This village also has an ATM machine. The bank account details can be easily accessed through a simple mobile SMS.
4. The Agri-produce of this village is sold at the cooperative society which doesn’t involve any cash which automatically leads to less corruption.
5. The bank accounts are linked to Aadhar cards and, therefore, all the benefits of these are transferred directly to their bank accounts.
6. It turns out a huge favor for village widows as well. Earlier, they had to spend 70 rupees to go to the district headquarters to avail their monthly pension of Rs 800/-. This is now done with much ease because they also have a savings account.
7. The people in this village buy phones and shoes on e-commerce websites like Flipkart and Snapdeal.
8. The schools have access to digital attendance and just like in urban schools, parents can come to know whether their child has attended the school or not.
But, this needs to be highlighted that before all of these changes were incorporated in this village, the socio-economic factors like literacy and physical connectivity of this village were already present. That is why this bank could make these changes in this village.
Children in this village use digital aid for learning things.
The area of education has been a complete makeover. ”Earlier, teaching used to be between just the teacher and the student. Now we have a digital aid,” said Pranav Upadhyay, a high-school teacher in Akodara. “Earlier when I used to talk about the universe to the students, it was just talk. Now they see it animated on the screen and it gets them interested and more engaged.” Children also use electronic gadgets to learn Gujarati.
India has over 6 lakh villages. And the real development of the nation always starts at the grass root levels. This little vision of Akodara is what every village should dream of because if this happens, we can talk of development in tangible terms. But before that, it’s imperative to eradicate the socio-economic factors that most of the villages struggle with.
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