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    India@ 75: Nandan Nilekani speaks on India’s IT journey

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    India@ 75: Nandan Nilekani speaks on India’s IT journey

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    CNBC-TV18’s Latha Venkatesh spoke to Nandan Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys, and its chairman. He is also the founding chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the body that administers Aadhaar to discuss the shining past of the last 75 years in IT industry and how India’s digital story is evolving.

    Undoubtedly, the most shining aspect of India's story over the past 75 years is its rise as an infotech power. India's IT industry landed on the global stage with a bang on the eve of the year 2000 with the Y2K problem. Since then, Indian IT has grown exponentially, and in the process, solved two of India's toughest problems.
    First: foreign exchange starting from 2000. FX earnings from software went up steadily from $6 billion in FY01 doubling to $12 billion in three years, and then doubling to $24 billion in two years, reaching $122 billion in FY22. And separately, another $90 billion came last year from Indians working abroad, mostly in IT, and sending money home.
    The second problem the industry solved was that of the educated unemployed. Since 2000, IT companies have stampeded into engineering colleges every year to sponge off almost every available engineer. Three years ago, TCS surpassed Indian railways as India's largest employer. The industry accounts for 50 lakh or 5 million jobs today, says NASSCOM.
    However, the biggest achievement of the infotech industry is the revolution that digitalization has brought about in governance, or e-governance. Aadhaar and its seeding into bank accounts has enabled money transfers to the poorest with much less leakage. The publicly owned payment system, UPI (unified payment interface) has eased payments without the customer having to surrender his data to big tech, like say Google or WhatsApp.
    Now the upcoming ONDC or the open network for digital commerce is likely to broaden the market for very small producers, who otherwise would have been out of the digital network or at the mercy of say an Amazon.
    India@75 is teaching a world weary of big tech, how to digitise democratically. To discuss how this digital story is evolving, and this shining past of the past 75 years in IT industry, CNBC-TV18’s Latha Venkatesh spoke to Nandan Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys, and its chairman. He is also the founding chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the body that administers Aadhaar.
    For the entire discussion, watch the accompanying video
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