‘ICTs strengthen democratic systems and institutions through enhanced engagement between citizens and the state’: Devusinh Chauhan
The 2nd ASEAN Digital Ministers (ADGMIN) meeting with India held recently on a virtual platform. H.E. Shri Devusinh Chauhan, Minister of State for Communications (MoSC) and H.E. Admiral Tin Aung San, Ministry of Transport and Communications, Myanmar co-chaired the meeting.
The ADGMIN is an annual meeting of Telecom Ministers of 10 ASEAN (Association of South-East Asian Nations) countries -Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam and dialogue partner countries – Australia, Canada, China, EU, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Russia, UK and US. The meeting discussed and deliberated various matters relevant to strengthening regional digital cooperation in the spirit of digital inclusion and integration.
Addressing the august gathering of Digital Ministers, Shri Devusinh Chauhan emphasized that Information and Communication Technologies enable and strengthen democratic systems and institutions through enhanced engagement between citizens and the state. He added that use of ICTs promote free speech, human rights and the free flow of information besides expanding citizens’ opportunities to participate in decision-making process and have potential to transform lives of people living in rural areas.
The Minister recalled vision of our Honorable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to leverage different technological solutions for development of the nation. In his address, Shri Devusinh Chauhan stated that COVID-19 is not only a challenge for the public health system, but it is also, shaking the economic and social orders of the countries. In this scenario, Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) have emerged as powerful tools to mitigate the effects of pandemic in different spheres of public life and they are foundations of the global economy.
The Ministers meeting approved the India-ASEAN Digital Work Plan 2022. The workplan includes system for combating the use of stolen and counterfeit mobile handsets, WiFi Access network interface for nationwide public internet, the capacity building and knowledge sharing in emerging areas in the field of Information and Communication Technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT), 5G, Advanced Satellite Communication, Cyber Forensics, etc. The ongoing and proposed projects in ICTs, will strengthen collaboration between India and ASEAN by leveraging complementary strengths of each other.