10-11 April 2000, Hotel Taj Palace, New Delhi, India
India’s Largest Conference & Exhibition on GIS/GPS/RS
Map India 2000 was organised by the Center for Spatial Database Management and Solutions (CSDMS) in collaboration with many government and non-government agencies during April 10-11, 2000 at New Delhi. Over 700 high profile experts from government organisations, institutions, companies and NGOs from India and abroad participated in the conference. This was the largest ever held conference in the field of geographic information technology in the country. The industry sponsors of the Conference were Autodesk, Bentley, Hewlett Packard, Rolta India Ltd and Tata Infotech Ltd.
The theme of the Conference was “GIS in the Internet Era”. Various stakeholders of GIS community discussed the changing scenario with regard to mapping technology in view of the Internet revolution. They called for an urgent need to modify the current mapping policy keeping in mind the implications of Internet.
In his welcome address, Dr. M. P. Narayanan, President, CSDMS, called for usage of Internet as a medium to disseminate spatial information and also for developing various GIS applications for decision making for the benefit of the society at large. Prof. Milan Konecny, Vice President, International Cartographic Association, while delivering the keynote address discusses the opportunities and challenges for cartograpy in 21st century. He emphasised on the need of data exchange at regional and global level.
Map India 2000 was inaugurated by Smt. Sheila Dixit, Chief Minister of Delhi. While inaugurating the conference, Smt. Dixit emphasised the need for transforming the potential of GIS and remote sensing into practical usage for e-governance by the Government. She announced plans to make Delhi a Cyber City by year 2003 and appealed to the participants to cooperate and help her achieve this target. She acknowledged the importance of maps in the overall development planning of the country while admitting that the present survey and land records in almost all the states of India is in a state of utter confusion and ill-organised.
On this occasion the Chief Minister also launched a GIS portal www.GISdevelopment.net, ‘The Asian GIS portal’. The site is developed by Act Now Infotech in collaboration with CSDMS. A MoU was signed between Anna University and CSDMS to conduct workshops, training programmes and carry out research projects jointly.
Addressing the Map India 2000, Prof. V. S. Ramamurthy, Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India, stressed the need to transform the benefits of GIS and remote sensing to the rural areas of the country.
Several technical sessions were organised during the conference. Arranged as per different themes, they revealed the use of GIS in the Internet era as well as some major application fields of GIS, GPS and remote sensing. The sessions were divided into two broad categories: Technology and Application.
The themes of the sessions focussing on Technology were: Global Positioning System (GPS), GIS Technology Trends, Indian Geographic Data, Internet GIS in India, GIS Industry in India: Opportunities and Challenges and Internet GIS Products. Beside these, there was a Technology presentation by Rolta India Ltd. and a session on remote sensing, coordinated by NRSA.
The sessions on Application covered the following topics: Natural Disaster Management, Urban Development, Land Information System, Water Resources Management, Health Services, Natural Resource Management, Geology and Mining and Transportation.
The highlight of the Conference was the presentation of various case studies on usage of Internet GIS for the common man. For the first time the Internet GIS projects in the country were brought together at one platform and deliberated at length. Participants could see the Andra Pradesh development monitoring system, web based GIS for handicraft industry and Internet GIS for industrial planning. Parveen Kolapkar, CIDCO, Mumbai got the award for the best paper presented and the best poster award was received by Nirupama and P. K. Sinha, WALMI, Lucknow.
The conference was concluded with an interesting panel discussion among some experts. Dr. M. P. Narayanan, President, CSDMS, coordinated the panel discussion. N. Vittal, Central Vigilance Commissioner, Government of India, in his valedictory address, said that Geographic Information System (GIS) is the net result of two key technologies, the technology of satellite imagery and information technology, which is the synthesis of computers and communication; this technology has helped the growth of convergence text, audio and video and a wide range of uses and means of communication. The panelists were Brig Amrik Singh, Director, Survey of India; Manosi Lahiri, ML Infomap Pvt. Ltd., P. Venkatram, Vice President, Siemens and Milan Konecny, Vice President, International Cartographic Association. Ravi Gupta, Director, CSDMS presented the recommendations of the conference, which were adopted after a detailed discussion among the panellists and the participants.
Parallel to the Conference, an exhibition on state of the art technology was also organised. There were more than 30 exhibitors displaying their technology and its applications. Over 1000 people visited the exhibition and the exhibitors did a good business. The uniqueness of the exhibition was that, in addition to vendors, quite a few users had also displayed their projects.
The main exhibitors
- Act Now Infotech
- Bentley Systems
- CADD Centre
- Census Bureau of India
- CE Infosystems
- Digital Electronics
- Genesys International
- Hewlett Packard
- Infotech Enterprises
- Lawrence and Mayo
- Ministry of Information Technology
- National Remote Sensing Agency
- PCI Geomatics
- Rolta India Ltd.
- Sanjay GPS
- Spatial Data Pvt. Ltd.
- Speck Systems
- Survey of India
- Tata Infotech
We, a congregation of several hundred GIS professionals, scientists, policy-makers, users, industry entrepreneurs assembled here in this historic city of Delhi attending Map India 2000, the 3rd Annual International Conference on GIS/GPS and remote sensing, organised by the Centre for Spatial Database Management and Solutions (CSDMS) on April 10-11, recognise the potential of Internet mapping sciences in meeting the challenges of the overall growth and development.
We recommend the following:
- The National IT Task force has recommended the dissemination of spatial data through Internet. A clear-cut policy on map publication and distribution on the Internet needs to be framed taking care of the security concerns of the country. The policy should also address the issues of data availability to the common man, its accessibility, dissemination and standardisation.
- The Government of India has instituted an annual award to recognise the government web sites providing e-governance services. A similar award may be instituted by the government for the best Internet GIS usage by any government agency.
- Data generating agencies need to make greater use of Internet for information dissemination, which will also lead to standardisation of geographical data in terms of storage, retrieval, display and analysis.
- There is an urgent need to review and liberalise the existing policy on aerial photography.
- The Department of Science and Technology would set up an agency on a permanent basis to receive suggestions from various government, Non-government and private agencies for suitable modifications in the map restriction policy. This agency should take up the issues with concerned organisations responsible for framing such policy every six months and get the changes made.
- Realising the importance of geographic information infrastructure, Map India 2000 supports the regional and global initiatives by the United Nations Region Cartographic Conference (UNRCC), the United Nations Economic and Social Commission of the Asia Pacific (UN-ESCAP), Regional Space Application Programme for sustainable development, The Global Resource Information Database (GRID) programme, the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG), the International Federation of Surveyors (FIS), the International Geographical Union, International Cartographic Association, ISPRS, Global Mapping, Digital Earth and the Global Spatial Data Infrastructure (GSDI).