NEW DELHI, January 15, 2013. FICCI and Geospatial Today released the first edition of ‘Empowering India through Geospatial Technologies: Select Stories’. The publication was released by Dr. T. Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology and Dr. Shailesh Nayak, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences.
Dr. Ramasami said that the power of technology lies in making it accessible to people. He pointed out, “There are three questions which needs to be answered in order to optimize the utility of geospatial. First is how to use this tool, how powerful is the tool and finally who will be empowered by the use of it?”
He emphasized that geospatial technology should not be confined for use only by the defence sector. The citizens of the nation should be handed the power of geospatial as the success stories reveal that it can go a long way in empowering people.
Dr. Shailesh Nayak, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences, stated that GIS can play a critical role in all spheres of good governance. Several local governments have now come to depend on geospatial technologies to not only organize and manage spatial data, but also for dissemination of information and services to citizens.
He added, in India, this technology is being used extensively for forest mapping, ground water survey, ocean productivity, environmental impact, land and water management, and disaster management. It is gradually being used for infrastructure inventory, transportation route planning and improved public service delivery by few state governments and departments.
Mr. Ramprasad, Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, Gateway Media Pvt. Ltd., said, “The utility of this technology has caught the attention of the masses – be it through Google maps or geo- enabled social networks. Complex GIS applications are being developed and consumed by common man during emergencies, while businesses are realizing efficiencies in using the technology right from planning strategies to analyzing results.
He explained, “The economies of scale required to bring geospatial technology to mainstream began with huge national projects like Re-structured Accelerated Power Development and Reform Programme (R-APDRP), Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) and Rajiv Awas Yojana(RAY), where this technology was one of the key enabler. These projects galvanized the geospatial industry to provide the best of services and solutions. Similarly, major geospatial applications started to help enabling municipalities in enhancing revenue collection, managing natural resources, biodiversity conservation and providing better citizen services.”With the larger vision of mainstreaming and widespread adoption of geospatial technology for planning and development, the publication aims to serve as an information bank for potential end-users to gain from the experiences of successful applications by other individuals and organizations.
The book is a compilation of articles and case studies of successful applications of geospatial technologies for decision-making and governance across sectors in India. It captures more than 40 success stories depicting the utility of geospatial technologies for achieving varied deliverables in different sectors. An attempt has been made to provide a holistic understanding of various applications across sectors such as: governance, municipality, infrastructure, natural resources & agriculture, disaster management, security, FMCG and banking.
Geospatial technologies enable generation of cost effective, timely and reliable information in spatial as well as temporal domain. This information can be utilised for regional to micro level management of resources and developmental planning. Owing to their multifarious capabilities, geospatial technologies stand proven as an effective administrative and management tool for decision making in diverse sectors.
Mr. Rajesh Mathur, Co-Chair, FICCI Task Force on Geospatial Technologies and Vice Chairman, NIIT-GIS Ltd., mentioned that his Task Force has taken up the charge of promoting the use of geospatial technologies across different domains and at the same time will propagate the role of GIS.
Many conferences and seminars have been organized and co-hosted by the Task Force in order to spread awareness. Also, in several states such as Gujarat and Karnataka projects have been initiated where geospatial technologies are being used for disaster management and empowering the state.
Dr. Arbind Prasad, Director General, FICCI, remarked that FICCI’s Task Force on geospatial technologies is presently working on the larger vision of mainstreaming applications of geospatial technology as an effective decision making tool for governance in India.
He said that FICCI aims to play the role of a facilitator in the growth of the geospatial industry in India as well as serve as an interface for public-private interactions to help establish the use of this technology across industry sectors.
FICCI Media Division