Dr. Modi, you have endorsed the 1000 town sanitation project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. How will it help improve the lives of Indians, especially those living in rural areas?
Narendra Modi is very techno savvy so he will use the internet technology to bring development to the rural India and achieve inclusive growth. Uptil now, technology has not been a major contributor in developing rural India. With the use of mobile internet to engage rural population in areas like banking for example, more people can be engaged with the national set up. First thing is to connect them, second is to fund them and third is to educate them. This will be naturally followed by health and other issues.
What are the big achievements of your company Spice Global?
We have brought in ‘many firsts’, new-age technologies to the country that have revolutionized office automation, mobile telephony and many other areas. Now what we are doing is we are changing the Spice group to Smart group.
We are going to use internet for healthcare, education, communica tion and banking. So, all our business verticals i.e. finance, education, entertainment, healthcare will switch to using ‘smart’ technologies.
How can your company Smart Global support the Modi Govt. in achieving this target?
We are building a Smart Health city in New Delhi and a Smart City in Rampur (UP). We have many projects in the pipeline and as a business our target is to achieve a higher GDP. Since I am a Singapore citizen, we shall look to encourage investments from Singapore and use the technical expertise of their private sector in building these cities. We are in touch with Singapore companies to bring that technical know-how and participate in tenders that shall be floated in the future.
How do you see the basic problems in urban & rural India?
We are living in a very inclusive world today, a unified ‘One World’. So India cannot think of any problem in isolation. We have to think of the resources which are available to India to resolve its problems. India has an added advantage through its OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) community who are citizens of various countries and are well connected politically worldwide. OCIs can be India’s gateway to the world whose expertise can be used to resolve problems in the urban and rural sectors.
India is already a global leader in the IT sector. How more can it use IT in a better manner?
Today, latest technologies are available in every field healthcare, entertainment etc. IT is the harbinger of all these new technologies. Indian IT professionals based across the globe can play a major role in bringing and executing these new developments in India. The fate of India, depends on investment from more seasoned players. FDI has played a major role in increasing the GDP of China and India too will see huge investment if the govt. allows it to come. So, far the govt. has been very restrictive in terms of allowing foreign investment to the country.
You are advocating a 4 point program which includes developing “Aastha Kunj”. What can be achieved with this?
It is important to take the global leadership because if we play by the rules which are made by others we give them the upper hand. I think developing countries, especially those that got independent after 1945 have got a raw deal in the United Nations and related bodies. It is very important that India as one of the fastest growing economic powers should represent all of them. Even Narendra Modi is not looking at the growth of India but the growth of the whole region because a major proportion of world population lives in these nations. So, India with its strong spiritual history will play a major role in global peace leadership.
What are your expectations from the new Govt in the centre especially for the rural development?
I think the key thing is transparency. Uptil now because of non-transparency, Indian businessman have not invested big money. I think rural area is not separate- it’s part of India. So, you cannot separate rural from India though their requirements are less i.e, they require products which are different and may be of much lower cost whose production is sustainable within India. To achieve all inclusive growth, agriculture can also be made more high-tech and technological knowledge can be used to improve agricultural productivity. And not only this the whole storage system, distribution system, export, lot of things are wasted in our country because of improper monitoring so all that will need to change.
What should be India’s National Agenda for Eco-Technological development for 2030?
I think India has much bigger advantage than China in this. Because China didn’t have private sector and China had to depend on people. India already has a huge private sector which and a huge business community which is working outside. So I think India has much bigger resources of people in terms of business people and technology than China has so we can move faster if the govt. looks for inclusive growth including everybody in the plan of development.
Your suggestions to develop the RURAL BHARAT?
Rural Bharat can be developed to match with the Urban Bharat and could be developed with the roads, transportation, internet, education, healthcare. So, Rural Bharat can’t be isolated. We have started a programme called Ekal Vidyalaya, which is putting 1 teacher schools in tribal areas of India. Now there are more than 55,000 of the one teacher schools. So, you cannot separate Rural Bharat from Urban Bharat you have to connect both and the way to connect it is through education, finance and Infrastructure because if it all gets connected and then the Rural Bharat can get an uplift.