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States may be given IT spending target

india Updated: Feb 09, 2010 22:50 IST
Rachit Vats

Electronic governance is getting pervasive in the government with an official mandate from the Centre, and that could be good news for the country’s e-commerce and information technology firms.

Speaking on the sidelines of Nasscom India Leadership Forum R. Chandrashekhar, secretary in the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, said every state government has been advised to allocate at least 3 per cent of its budget for IT. This would amount to an investment of $4 billion (Rs 18,800 crore) every year in IT alone.

“The 2010 budget will soon be tabled. IT sector is expected to be given a priority. Investment is not a concern but management of the IT initiatives is the bigger challenge,” Chandrashekhar said.

He cited the Indian Railways, which has emerged as a key e-governance player by implementing online booking to run the world’s largest rail network, as one of the finest examples of e-commerce expansion in India.

The National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) expects a strong domestic market in 2010 and sustained spending on IT by the government.

Nasscom estimates the government’s IT spending to reach Rs 25,000 crore by 2011 from Rs 15,000 crore.

E-governance, the business of using Websites seek information, make applications and interact with officials, can improve services for citizens, officials say. E-governance projects are expected to change the way citizens lodge a police complaint, file an application under the Right to Information (RTI) law apply for a licence.