Illiteracy: a country where people with different cultures

Illiteracy: Every issue that our society faces is like a link of a chain. Each issue is connected to another, either directly or indirectly. The chain of issues in this society that we live in, the strongest link of that chain is illiteracy. Illiteracy is the mother of all issues as it gives birth to many other issues like poverty, unemployment, child labour, female foeticide, population burst and many more. Literacy can be defined as the ability to read and write with understanding in any language.

But in India, if a person who can do signature but cannot read and write a language can be considered as literate. Any formal education or minimum educational standard is not necessary to be considered literate. Literacy level of India is very low, which is a huge obstacle in implementation of e-Governance projects. Illiterate people are not able to access the e-Governance applications and due to that projects do not get much success.1 Different Languages: India is a country where people with different cultures and different religions live. People belonging to different states speak different languages.

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India has 22 official languages near about more than 750 are unofficial languages. The diversity of people in context of language is a huge challenge for implementing e-Governance projects as e-Governance applications are written in English language. And also, English may not be understandable by most of the people. Therefore, it becomes a challenge for the government to write e-Governance applications which are to be implemented for the whole nation in more than one language so that these may be acceptable to the users of a particular language.

2 Lack of knowledge about Information Technology: Most of the Indian people are not literate and those who are literate, they do not have much knowledge about Information Technology (IT). Large numbers of the people in India are not aware about the usage of Information Technology. So, in India, having such low level of IT literacy, how can e-Governance projects be implemented successfully? We can say that IT illiteracy is a major obstacle in implementation of e-Governance in India.

So, first of all Indian people must be made aware/literate about the usage of Information Technology. Lack of Application Recognition: Lack of recognition of the e-Governance facilities by the citizens is another huge obstacle or challenge in way of e-Governance. It is a challenge to have all the citizens well aware of the facilities offered by the e-government and have them to trust in it, so that citizens should be ready to accept these facilities.

Lack of User Friendly Environment on Government Websites: Users of e-Governance applications are often non-expert users who may not be able to use the applications in a right manner. Such users need guidance and help to find the right way to perform their transactions/business. Therefore, government websites must be user friendly so that more and more people can use them easily. Hence, these websites can be more effective for their users.

If government websites will be designed in an easier/simple format only then these will be more usable for the users who are not expert users of IT. Lack of accessibilities of Government Services: Lack of accessibilities of services is another main obstacle in way of success of it. The concept of e-Governance is claiming for increased efficiency and effectiveness of the government, but these goals will be achieved only if the service will be available to the 100% of the citizens. So, every service should be accessible by anybody from anywhere and anytime.

Even if the users of Internet are growing but still there is a major part of Indian population which is not able to access e-Governance activities for variety of reasons, e.g. some people may have limited access to Information and Communication Technologies and devices. Therefore, government has to provide internet access through public terminals as a part of their universal access efforts. Lack of Confidence on Technologies Provided by Government: The implementation of public administration functions through e-Governance requires that the user must be confident and comfortable while using the technology.

He must also trust the technology that he/she is interacting with. Indian Government is at the earlier stage of e-Governance and due to that government is not able to achieve required confidence in use of technology. Separation: The separation that exists between the individuals, communities and businesses that have access to Information Technology and those that do not have such access. Economic poverty is closely related to the limited information technology resources. People who are living below poverty line cannot afford a computer and internet connection for themselves to take the benefits of the e-Governance and other on-line services.

Economic poverty is not the only cause of this separation; it may also be caused by the lack of awareness among the people. Population: Population of India is probably the biggest challenge in implementing e-Governance projects. As population is considered to be an asset to the country but it also offers some other challenges e.g. establishing person identities. There is no unique identity of individuals in India although Indian government is making efforts for providing unique identity to its citizens which is known as Adhaar Card (UID).

Apart from this, measuring the population, keeping the database of all Indian nationals and keeping this database updated and then providing the e-Governance services to the whole population are major challenges. Struggle to Change: The struggle to change phenomenon can explain much of the hesitation that occurs on the part of the constituents in moving from a paper-based to electronic/web-based system to interact with government. Citizens, employees and businesses can all have their biases with respect to how transactions should be processed. But government entities and public policy administrators cannot ignore the changes that occur as a result of the implementation of the ICT.

Education about the value of a new system is one step towards reducing some of this struggle. People are not aware about benefits of it: Most of the Indian people are not aware of the benefits of e-Governance services. Even the government do not pay much attention to make the people aware about e-Governance activities. Unawareness is a major challenge in the implementation of e-Governance projects. Lack of integrity in services between State and Center Government: Most of the e-Governance services which are offered by the state or central government are not integrated.

Lack of communication between different departments of government may be its major cause. Therefore, the information that resides within one department has no or very little meaning to some other department of the government.


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