Pranab Mukherjee Current Affairs - 2020

President Pranab Mukherjee declares Kerala as first digital state

President Pranab Mukherjee has formally declared Kerala as the country’s first digital state.

It was announced by President after launching a digital empowerment campaign of state at a function to be held in Kozhikkode. The campaign aims at bridging the digital divide by 2020.

This declaration was made considering the rapid digital strides of the state which has achieved 100 percent mobile connectivity, 75 percent e-literacy, maximum digital banking, broadband connectivity upto the Panchayat level, linking bank accounts with Aadhar cards and e-district plan in all districts.

Key facts

  • Kerala was able to achieve this feat due to the combined efforts of the government and various social organizations in the state
  • State has successfully linked all villages in the state with broadband connectivity under the National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) project. It is first state in country to do so.
  • The broadband connectivity has helped to provide high-speed internet in all gram panchayats and remote areas of the state.
  • Apart from NOFN it, two projects started by the government in 2002 viz. Akshaya and IT@School – also has helped it to attain high e literacy.
  • Under these projects over 2,500 Akshaya service centres functioning in rural and urban areas have helped generate awareness in e-governance.
  • State also has over 600 e-governance applications covering almost all departments of state that play pioneering role in delivering e-services to citizens.
  • As a digital state, Kerala has a mobile tele-density of 95% and Internet access covering over 60 % of the population.

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President Pranab Mukherjee inaugurates India’s first Gender Park at Kozhikode

President Pranab Mukherjee inaugurated India’s first Gender Park at Kozhikode district of Kerala. It is also the first of its kind gender equality convergence centre in Asia.

The park is an initiative of the Social Justice Department of the Kerala Government to promote research and other initiatives to enable total gender equality.

Key facts

  • The Gender Park seeks to encourage women to take part in developmental and decision making process.
  • It has been launched as part of supporting the efforts of the State and Central governments in ensuring an inclusive, discrimination free society.
  • It covers issues pertaining to all three genders and in accordance with the 2015 gender and transgender policies of the state government.
  • The Gender Institute at the park will mainly focus on learning, research and capacity development.
  • It seeks to bring together the state, civil society and academia on a common platform to promote studies and research on gender issues to address the gender issues.
  • This platform seeks to create an environment to share global knowledge and experiences in reducing gender inequalities.
  • It also seeks to create awareness of the critical linkages between gender equality, economic growth and poverty reduction to effectively address gender related issues in national development processes.

State Government under its Gender Policy is planning to roll out ‘She Taxi’ that aims solely at empowering women. Earlier in 2016, State government had launch ‘Gender Taxi’ that is owned and operated by transgenders under its Transgender Policy (first such policy in the country).

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