India: India is likely to end up spending around USD 20 billion on the current overhaul of its IT infrastructure, according to Sam Pitroda, India’s prime minister’s advisor on public information infrastructure and innovations.
Pitroda said, “We are putting up national knowledge networks, connecting panchayats, creating e-goverance facilities, software, UID (unique identification number), GIS applications. When we put all this together we would probably spend USD 20 billion over the next five years on IT infrastructure.”
The estimate by Pitroda, who has a unique perspective of government’s IT-related expenditure due to his unique position at the centre, is the first estimation of the quantum of investment that is going into different government-funded IT related projects. It is also higher than the USD 8.2 billion estimate given by the government for the various ‘digitisation’ projects currently underway at its various ministries and bodies.