The Minister of Communications, Electronics & Information Technology and Law & Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad has said that Common Service Centres (CSCs) have the potential to grow exponentially to do financial transactions of three lakh crore rupees in next five years.
He was addressing the CSC women Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs) workshop, held recently. Union Minister Prasad said that the CSC model has become very successful. Within 10 years of inception, 3.65 lakh CSCs have become operational and are undertaking financial transactions worth over 70,000 crore rupees.
The CSCs provide high quality and cost-effective video, voice and data content and services, in the areas of e-governance, education, health, telemedicine, entertainment as well as other private services. A highlight of the CSCs is that it offers web-enabled e-governance services in rural areas, including application forms, certificates, and utility payments such as electricity, telephone and water bills.
Minister Prasad called upon the VLEs, associated with Common Service Centres (CSC), to form Self-Help Groups to start a movement in the country. He said that India wants to promote self-help groups which can usher in big changes in villages and help in the country’s development.
“CSC has become an integral part of the implementation of various Govt. schemes and delivery of service. I am happy to note that CSC has completed 10 Cr PMFBY registrations, 2.69 lakh registrations in Ayushman Bharat, 10.84 lakh Wi-Fi subscribers. VLEs are entrusted with the maintenance of 1.25 lakh Bharat Net at Panchayat level and establishment of 1 lakh Digital Villages across the country. We are thankful to PM Shri Modi for his support. Government of India is promoting Self Help Groups. CSCs should make good SHGs of 100 women. I want to see the SHG movement through CSC. Through CSC movement, we have made a new India digitally empowered, financially enabled and actively participate in nation-building. Digital India is for all caste, creed and colour including SC/STs, Backwards, Tribes and Minorities,” Minister Prasad said.
The Minister said that the best performing CSC will be given an award of Rs. 10,000 and some of them will be sent abroad to showcase their achievements.
Speaking on the occasion, the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan said that CSC has become an important government agency and it should build upon its strength in the future to expand and consolidate. He said the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas is already using the services of CSCs in booking and delivery of LPG cylinders. A new dimension to this collaboration is likely to be added by making CSC as PoS (Point of Sale). He said it would be desirable if 25% of LPG distribution is routed through CSCs.