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HomeNewsIndia not only adapting tech but it is actually leading the way:...

India not only adapting tech but it is actually leading the way: Gates

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Microsoft co-founder

Bill Gates

engaged in a compelling discussion covering a range of critical issues, from Artificial Intelligence (

AI

) to

climate change

mitigation and women’s empowerment. The leaders offered insights into the convergence of technology,

sustainability

, and social empowerment on the global stage.
Bill Gates lauded India’s technological advancements, highlighting the nation’s pivotal role in AI innovation.

Meanwhile, PM Modi underscored the intrinsic link between AI and everyday life, humorously remarking on a child’s first cries and the significance of ‘AI’ in Indian society.
The conversation further delved into India’s strategic focus on AI, exemplified by the recent approval of the comprehensive

IndiaAI mission

with a substantial budget allocation. This mission aims to foster a robust AI ecosystem through strategic partnerships and initiatives across sectors, driving innovation and inclusive development.
PM Modi also highlighted initiatives aimed at empowering women, citing the transformative

Namo Drone Didi program

, which equips women with drone piloting skills, thereby fostering economic independence and rural development.

The discussion further underscored India’s ambitious climate commitments, including the “Panchamrit” pledge announced at the COP26 summit. PM Modi also showcased a jacket made from recycled materials, symbolizing India’s commitment to sustainable practices and environmental stewardship.
Key Points from their discussion:
Digital revolution in India
PM Modi shared insights into India’s digital revolution, highlighting its democratized approach to technology to prevent monopoly. “During the G20 Summit in Indonesia, representatives from around the world expressed their curiosity about the digital revolution in the country. I explained to them that we have democratised technology to prevent monopoly. It is by the people and for the people..,” the PM said.

Bill Gates, on the other hand, praised India’s leadership in adopting and advancing technology, particularly in governance. He said, “In here, it is like Digital Government. India is not only adapting technology but it is actually leading the way…”
Won’t allow digital divide in India: PM
In an interaction with philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, Modi said he used to hear of the digital divide in the world and had decided that he would not allow this to happen in India.
The prime minister also said that digital public infrastructure is required, with Gates adding that India is leading the way.
Role and benefits of technology and AI
PM Modi talked about the integration of AI in various facets of governance and society, citing examples from the 2023 G20 Summit and initiatives like the NaMo App. The PM also noted as to how he used AI in the G20 summit for translating speeches and also his addresses in different languages at several events. A technology like ChatGPT should be used to constantly improve oneself, he said.
He told Gates how AI was utilised during the 2023 G20 Summit and how his Hindi speech was translated into Tamil during the Kashi Tamil Sangamam event, and the use of AI in the NaMo App.
He also spoke about India’s potential to leverage AI for transformative growth. Additionally, PM Modi outlined his excitement about technological advancements in healthcare, agriculture, and education. “…Historically, during the first and second industrial revolutions we lagged because we were a colony. Now, in the midst of a fourth industrial revolution, the digital element is at its core. I am confident that India will gain a lot in this,” he said.
He also said, “…AI is very important. Sometimes, I jokingly say that in our country, we call our mother ‘Aai’. Now I say that when a child is born, he says ‘Aai’ as well as AI as children have become so advanced.”
The PM also said AI should not be seen as a magic tool or as a replacement for people’s laziness to do some work.
Deepfake and related concerns
PM Modi raised concerns about the misuse of AI, particularly in generating deepfake content, and proposed measures to mitigate its negative impact. “If such a good thing (AI) is given to someone without proper training, it is likely to be misused…I suggested that we should start with clear watermarks on AI-generated content. So that nobody is misguided…In a democratic country like India, anybody can use deepfake…It’s crucial to acknowledge that deepfake content is AO-generate…We need to think about some dos and don’ts..,” PM said, adding, “If we use AI as a magic tool, it will perhaps lead to a grave injustice. If AI is relied on out of laziness…then it is the wrong path. I should have a competition with ChatGPT and strive to go ahead of AI…”
Bill Gates also acknowledged the challenges associated with AI but expressed optimism about its potential for positive impact. He said “These are early days in AI…It will do things that you think are hard and then it will fail to something which you think is easy. It seems like AI is a huge opportunity but there are a few challenges that come with it.”
Namo Drone Didi Scheme
PM Modi elaborated on the Namo Drone Didi scheme, emphasizing its role in empowering women and bridging the digital divide in rural areas. He said, “When I used to hear about the digital divide in the world, I used to think that I would not allow anything like that to happen in my country. Digital public infrastructure is a major requirement in itself…Women are more open to adopting new technology in India…I have started ‘Namo Drone Didi’ scheme…This is going on very successfully. I interact with them these days, they are delighted. They say that they didn’t know to ride a bicycle but they are now pilots and can fly drones. The mindset has changed.”
2023 G20 Summit
PM Modi reflected on the extensive discussions preceding the G20 Summit and expressed optimism about aligning with the core purposes and objectives of the G20.
“During the G20 Summit in Indonesia, representatives from around the world expressed their curiosity about the digital revolution in the country. I explained to them that we have democratised technology to prevent monopoly. It is by the people and for the people..,” the PM said.
Bill Gates also commended India’s inclusive approach to hosting the summit, emphasizing the significance of digital innovations and south-south collaboration. Gates said, “In here, it is like Digital Government. India is not only adapting technology but it is actually leading the way…”
I have childlike curiosity for technology: PM Modi
PM Modi said he believed in democratisation of technology as it gives everyone an equal opportunity and added that he is taking technology to villages.
To a query from Gates, he said he is fascinated by technology but is not a slave to it. “I am not an expert but have childlike curiosity for technology,” the PM said.
He also highlighted the “Drone Didi” scheme for women to use drones in agriculture and the initiative to provide long-distance treatment to patients.
Technology is being used to plug the shortcomings of teachers in education, PM Modi also said.
He said digital technology will have a big role in the fourth industrial revolution and he is confident that India will do well.
(With inputs from agencies)

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