A bright success story has come out from Kerala. Sreenath K, who works as a coolie on the Ernakulam junction in Kerala for the past five years, has cleared the written test for the Kerala Public Service Commission. Sreenath’s story is a huge success for a daily wage earner who had to carry heavy luggage to earn his bread and butter. This success story was made possible through learning from digital sources, as the free WiFi internet services being provided at the Ernakulum Junction helped Sreenath prepare for the examination while on the job. Free WiFi enabled Sreenath to listen to tutorials from the digital course with a smartphone and earphone in his ears, while Sreenath used to carry the luggage of passengers. The free Wifi internet services were made possible by Digital India, the dream project of PM Modi. The Railwire WiFi service launched in 2016 provides free internet at railway stations with the help of RailTel Corporation of India Ltd.
PM Modi’s dream of a Digital India has changed the life of Sreenath forever. After his third attempt at the Kerala PSC exams, a happy Sreenath had this to say to PTI when contacted, “I have appeared thrice for the exam and this is the first time I used the WiFi at the station. What I do is put on my earphones and listen to the study material as I carry the luggage or solve questionnaires in my mind. This way I can study while I work. I revise all my work at night when I get free time,” Sreenath said over phone.
Kerala has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons in the past few years. From brutal attacks on common people and RSS workers in broad daylight, to youths joining ISIS, Kerala “God’s own country” has seen bad days under CPI (M) rule. This piece of news from Ernakulam has become a silver lining in the dark clouds the communist-run state has seen in the recent past.
All credit for success of the Digital India programme goes to PM Modi and his team. The digital boom has enabled India to grow in a way never seen before. At least 685 railway stations in India today are equipped with WiFi facilities. Indian Railways have set a target of making all 8,500 stations in India WiFi enabled by March 2019. The Digital India programme launched by PM Modi in 2015 with a promise to ensure digitally connected and empowered India. The Digital India programme focused on 9 key areas –
1) Broadband Highway
2)Universal Access to Mobile connectivity
3) Public Internet Access Programme
4) E-Governance, reforming Government through Technology
5) E-Kranti, electronic delivery of services
6) Information for all
7) Electronics Manufacturing
8) IT for Jobs
9) Early Harvest Programmes
All these programmes have been created keeping in mind the needs of the common man of India. From government offices to shopping, everything will be at the fingertips in the coming years. Education techniques will undergo a massive change once the entirety of India is connected with the Internet. Sreenath K is a tiny example of the massive help students across India will receive once they get a chance to be digitally connected with the rest of the world. From Jammu and Kashmir to Kerala, our nation will be connected boosting inter-state trade and communication.
These programme when fully implemented will do wonders for the Indian economy and e-literacy. WiFi services at the stations have helped Sreenath in clearing exams of state PSC level, and with time similar stories will become more commonly heard. Sreenath K and PM Modi both deserve a hearty round of applause for their dedication and perseverance. Sreenath deserves praise for changing his life through commitment towards education, while PM Modi should be applauded for his far sighted approach towards Digital India which has enabled people like Sreenath to excel in life. The common man’s life has changed considerably since the PM Modi led BJP government has come to power and it will continue to change for the better in the coming years. If these aren’t ‘acche din’, then its perhaps too difficult to convince the critics of PM Modi.