Indian Open Source Software Policy And Beyond

At last Government of India (GoI) came up with a policy (PDF Link) that mandates all Government organizations to make use of Open Source Software (OSS) to implement e-Governance projects. The policy looks great on paper, however we need more than just policy/policies, and here are few things I would like to suggest:

Make Your System Open First:

Apart from making use of OSS, GoI should first open the systems that were developed internally. GitHub for Government is the best way to share that piece of software GoI developed to create paperless workflow, even Google agrees on this. Few example projects that can be open sourced are:

Kerala State Government is on GitHub.

Can We Also Have A Policy on Digital Security?:

Those who regularly visit NIC maintained GoI websites, must have encountered a message suggesting you to discontinue, as it’s insecure. We all know that web has already moved to HTTPS, then why not GoI? A simple thing that would go long way in securing information and website. Government of Maharashtra is the only government organization (do check implemented e-Governance projects) that seems to be using this approach.

Time To Have A CTO:

DeitY needs a technocrat who can guide the e-Governance project better. We have plethora of technical people who represent or lead India in different open source projects, and they really know how to get things done. Having someone with such experience at DeitY will cut down the time to project implementation, and will lead to better secured systems. Just look at the CTO profile of the United States.

We Need Net Neutrality:

We better fix net neutrality issue in India, before it is too late. GoI has requested interested people to send their feedback on net neutrality, and we all should get together on this. If you are wondering what’s net neutrality, the please check this website.

Hi, I’m Chetan Arvind Patil, I write this blog