Indigenous Innovation: A blueprint for systematically achieving Viksit Bharat

With a growth rate of 2.8 times than regular GDP, digital economy is aimed to reach a size of 1 trillion dollars by 2030. The CHIPS (Connect-Harness-Innovate-Protect-Sustain) framework is leading the country to establish efficient use of frontier technologies, thus ensuring India’s significant presence in the global digital map through sustainable practices. Through partnerships such as GPAI and iCET along with programs such as YUVAi and INSPIRE, India has established a bridge through which its citizens are able to explore the benefits of global technology revolutions. India’s vast population with flourishing young demographic is providing a fertile ecosystem for digital adoption and innovation. With a large and tech-savvy young population and a focus on STEM education, India is cultivating a workforce ready to support and propel the digital revolution. However, the new government may need to focus solving number of challenges, peculiar to industries such as AI and frontier technologies, to achieve digital economy goals in systematic manner.

To propel India’s digital economy goals, a robust data governance framework must be developed, anchored in the Digital Personal Data Protection Act, necessitating the adoption of related rules. Education initiatives are vital to ensure stakeholders comprehend and adapt to these frameworks, with special attention given to empowering small businesses to comply effectively. Moreover, prioritizing the strengthening of the Information Technology Act over the adoption of the Digital India Act and associated frameworks is essential. This approach ensures a foundation rooted in existing legislation, fostering a conducive environment for digital innovation, while safeguarding privacy and promoting responsible data practices, thus advancing India’s digital economy goals comprehensively.

Creating a framework for big tech companies to act responsibly is imperative for fostering the rapid growth of the digital economy. As significant drivers of innovation and economic activity, these companies wield considerable influence over digital ecosystems. Therefore, establishing guidelines and regulations ensures that their actions align with societal values, ethical standards, and consumer interests. Such a framework encourages transparency, accountability, and fair competition, fostering trust among users and investors alike. By promoting responsible behaviour, big tech companies can contribute positively to the digital economy’s growth trajectory, driving innovation, and sustainable development.

Security audits play a pivotal role in ensuring the growth of India’s digital economy, particularly concerning the Internet of Things (IoT). With IoT devices becoming increasingly ubiquitous across sectors, from healthcare to transportation, their security vulnerabilities pose significant risks to data privacy, infrastructure integrity, and consumer trust. Conducting comprehensive security audits not only identifies potential weaknesses but also mitigates the threat landscape, bolstering confidence in IoT systems. This, in turn, fosters innovation, investment, and widespread adoption of IoT technologies, essential for the digital economy’s expansion. By prioritizing security audits, India can proactively address cybersecurity challenges, laying a resilient foundation for sustainable digital growth and prosperity.

To establish leadership in the digital economy, India must initiate a revolution in semiconductor design and manufacturing. While enabling fabrication facilities is crucial, it’s insufficient to drive substantial industry transformation. A paradigm shift necessitates a comprehensive framework that attracts both design and manufacturing activities to Indian shores. This entails creating an ecosystem conducive to semiconductor innovation, encompassing research and development incentives, skilled workforce development, intellectual property protection, and regulatory support. By focusing on fostering semiconductor design capabilities alongside manufacturing infrastructure, the new government can catalyse India’s ascent as a global semiconductor hub, essential for sustaining digital economy leadership in the long term.

India’s historical stance of merely following global technology trends is insufficient to achieve its ambitions of becoming a global leader in the digital economy and realizing the goals of a Viksit Bharat. To truly advance, India must transcend its past approach and proactively embrace emerging technologies such as 6G and AI. Rather than being reactive, the nation must seize early advantages in these domains to drive innovation and competitiveness on the global stage. Additionally, while India has excelled in service-oriented software industries, it’s imperative to pivot towards a product-oriented digital economy. By harnessing the strengths of its software expertise and transitioning towards product development, India can foster indigenous innovation, generate higher value-added services, and assert its leadership in the digital realm effectively.Achieving a delicate balance between industry self-regulation and government oversight is crucial for fostering the growth of India’s digital economy. While industry self-regulation promotes innovation, flexibility, and responsiveness to market dynamics, government oversight ensures consumer protection, market integrity, and regulatory compliance. The media industry exemplifies the benefits of this balance, where self-regulatory bodies work alongside government agencies to uphold journalistic standards and safeguard public interest. Similarly, in the digital realm, striking this equilibrium is essential to nurture a thriving ecosystem that encourages innovation while safeguarding user rights, data privacy, and cybersecurity. By embracing this approach, India can create an environment conducive to sustainable digital growth, fostering trust, innovation, and competitiveness in the global digital economy landscape.As India aspires to lead the global digital economy, the imperative lies in embracing proactive measures, from fostering indigenous innovation and talent development to establishing robust regulatory frameworks. By prioritizing these changes, India can position itself as a formidable force in the digital landscape, driving inclusive growth and global competitiveness.

The author is a software engineer based in the Bay Area, California, specializing in user data privacy, user settings accessibility, and educational technology.


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