India is all set to embrace Artificial Intelligence. From agriculture to aeronautics, healthcare to education, the country is enthusiastic about using machine learning and artificial intelligence to boost productivity and profit.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Wadhwani Institute of Artificial Intelligence — a joint initiative by the Maharashtra government and Mumbai Varsity to promote and encourage Ai as mainstream curriculum among students. “This institute is a perfect example of a private public partnership.

A fururistic India

The launch of such initiatives will definitely create a vibrant, futuristic India,” Modi said. The Prime Minister also added that the launch of the AI institute is bound to have a positive impact, and, in particular, benefit the poor.

Highlighting the need for a better and digital-savvy India, Modi spoke about a series of initiatives undertaken by the government to offer rich digital infrastructure and make the nation adept at information technology. According to 2017 stats, despite a meagre 34% internet penetration, India still ranks No.2 in Internet use globally. The much touted Digital India program is raising awareness about digital literacy and is bringing tech education to every remote town and village in the country.

Hope Vs Fear

Through Bharat-Net program, the government is providing internet connectivity to remote Indian villages. National Skill Development Mission, a program launched by the central government, is building a future ready workforce that will be equipped to handle job requirements across the globe. Contrary to popular belief that bots are here to steal jobs, the advent of these technologies are meant to empower human mind, the Prime Minister said.

“There are two sides to technological evolution. On one hand, it brings hope; on the other, it creates fear of disruption,” he said.

Modi pointed out that although doubts and fears might arise about humans being made redundant owing to these newfangled technologies, there is no need to fear them, as these are only here to make people’s lives easier, the Prime Minister reassured.

Artificial Intelligence opens up a vast array of opportunities. Creation of new jobs often outweighs the jobs taken away. “Human ingenuity will continue to prevail,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that he is optimistic about Artificial Intelligence because Indians have always blended science with spirituality, and the harmony of the two is the need of the hour, as it spells greater good for mankind.

Modi said that Artificial Intelligence will be driven by our intentions. Human intent will determine the outcome of AI, he said, adding that the potential of a technology has only given more power and authority to humans.

Make AI in India, Make AI work for India, the Prime Minister reiterated.

It’s time to identify and analyze social and economic challenges that could be solved by technologies such as AI and machine learning.

As India is a diverse nation with people speaking different dialects and languages, Modi urged innovators to bring AI to conversations. This would help unite people and build dialog among those who speak different languages. He also urged scientists to help bring high quality education to Indian classrooms. Innovators must use AI to bridge the gap in education through a healthy combination of human teachers and machines in classrooms, he said.

The Prime Minister added that the governemnet is planning to empower more start-ups in the technology space. India will house world-class labs and innovation hubs to empower millions of students and youth.

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