The advent of the present Government in 2014 was marked by a clear recognition of the huge potential of the digital economy. The Government took the digital push in the country to unprecedented levels with many spectacular initiatives that attracted Global attention and drew praise.
The Aadhar project was taken to its logical conclusion by a vigorous drive, the JAM program (jandhan Aadhaar and mobile) program saw over 200 million people benefitting from financial inclusion through bank accounts and direct benefits transfer(DBT).
Linkage of mobile Aadhar (recently barred by the Supreme Court) gave government and businesses the ability to deal with a vast population individually and without leakage caused by non-value adding intermediaries. The CSC program was expanded to 2,50,000 Panchayats and now provides employment to near a million people in the rural heartland. Technology can indeed be used to distribute economic opportunity and job creation more equitably.
Meanwhile , global developments in technology lead to the emergence and use at scale of enormously powerful highly affordable almost infinitely scalable disruptive technologies like social media, mobile,(data) Analytics, cloud, Artificial Intelligence, IoT, 3-D printing, etc.
The Indian IT industry has also grown from strength to strength and had become a 150+ billion dollar behemoth that was globally respected and often, envied.
The last 5 years have seen one other major development , namely the rapid growth of the third largest start up eco-system in the world with around 7,500 tech start ups.
After initially coming up with clones for western products in e-commerce, transportation, entertainment and hyper-local; logistics and deliveries, the start up eco-system is increasingly creating innovative products and services focused on solving Indian problem in healthcare ,agriculture, fintech, cyber security ,energy to name a few.
Of course, many of these have a global potential even though they started off with an Indian focus India is well on its way to becoming a fountainhead of frugal innovation for the global by creating services in various areas, but more importantly in the social sector, by leveraging new, disruptive technologies.