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India organises Gov Tech-Thon 2020 to crowdsource tech innovation

Building upon the ideation and directives and under the aegis of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), the National Informatics Centre (NIC), IEEE Computer Society and a tech giant have come together to announce Gov Tech-Thon 2020. The initiative is designed to incubate new ideas, boost innovation and use technology in agriculture and allied sectors.

Gov Tech-Thon 2020, a pan India 36 hours virtual Hackathon, to be organised from 30 October to 1 November 2020. The Hackathon will be facilitated by IEEE, a well-established institute for engineering, computing and technology information. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology announced the launch of the hackathon by activating the online portal signalling that registrations for Gov TechThon 2020 were open.

The virtual hackathon is open to students, working professionals, startups, freelance technologists, faculty, and other IT service firms in India. During the hackathon, participants will receive mentorship and advice from technical experts from NIC, IEEE and Oracle, as well as senior domain experts from the Ministries of Agriculture, Education and Transport Departments, Government of India.

Participating teams will have access to the latest tools from the tech company, its Autonomous Database, built-in and easy-to-use cloud security and compute – to help them develop prototypes that are practical and scalable. Additionally, they will be able to leverage open source technologies that bring benefits of high performance, reliability and data security.

The efforts of the National Informatics Centre, IEEE and tech partner incoming together to organise this hackathon have been greatly appreciated by the Ministry. India is keen to make digital transformation inclusive, widespread and comprehensive. An integral and essential part of this is youth. The ministry recognises that youth are an important part of India’s digital ecosystem and he looks forward to their participation in the hackathon and their solutions to the challenges.

Dr Neeta Verma, Director General, NIC in her address at the release of the online portal for ‘Gov Tech-Thon 2020’, said that the hackathon is a step towards developing a digital ecosystem with more emerging technologies. She was optimistic that Gov Tech-Thon 2020 would spur a lot of ideas, proof of concepts, working models for innovation and inclusion in government services.

Dr Savita Dawar, Deputy Director-General, NIC gave a brief introduction to the five challenges including AI-based crop recommendations, Blockchain-based seed certification, Automated vigilance in exams/tests, Automated fitness check process for commercial vehicles and Easy document uploads, from Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Road Transport and Highways in India which require immediate solutions.

Shri Harish Mysore, Senior Director and Head of IEEE India Operations said, “IEEE has been empowering engineers for over a century, helping advance technology across sectors. This partnership with NIC and Oracle will help increase the use of technology, reduce the digital divide in agriculture, transportation and education and will help us deliver better governance to citizens of India.”

The Regional Managing Director of the tech company felt in order to transform India into a digital and knowledge economy, the nation must first digitally empower all its people, key economic sectors and allied communities. Join hands with NIC and IEEE for Gov Tech-Thon 2020 was a key step and the company was looking forward to supporting local innovation in all key areas identified.

Established in 1976, the National Informatics Centre is attached to the office of Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). It has rich experience in providing ICT and eGovernance for the last 4 decades and helping bridge the digital divide.

NIC spearheaded “Informatics-Led-Development” by implementing ICT applications in social and public administration and facilitates electronic delivery of services to the government (G2G), business (G2B), citizen (G2C) and government employee (G2E). NIC, through its ICT Network, “NICNET”, has institutional linkages with all the Ministries /Departments of the Central Government, 37 State Governments/ Union Territories, and about 720+ District Administrations of India.

IEEE is the world’s largest technical professional organisation dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. IEEE and its members inspire a global community to innovate for a better tomorrow through its more than 419,000 members in over 160 countries.

The IEEE Computer Society is the premier source for information, inspiration, and collaboration in computer science and engineering. Connecting members worldwide, the Computer Society empowers the people who advance technology by delivering tools for individuals at all stages of their professional careers.

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