The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Hitech goes Gogoi

Guwahati, Feb. 19: Chief minister Tarun Gogoi today clicked a mouse to launch one of the most ambitious education projects of the state aimed at making schoolchildren computer literate.

Dubbed the Rajiv Gandhi Computer Literacy Programme, the project will be a joint effort of the state government, Assam Electronics Development Corporation Limited (Amtron) and two top leaders in the field of IT education — National Institute of Information Technology (NIIT) and Computer Maintenance Corporation (CMC). The project will cover 600 schools within a period of five years.

The Rs 37-crore project, entirely funded by the state government, envisages computer literacy among students of Classes V to XII in government higher secondary schools. The course will enable the students to choose a successful career in the booming information technology sector.

Inaugurating the project at the Ganesh Mandir Higher Secondary School here, Gogoi described the moment as a “Red Letter Day as the dream of building a computer-literate Assam has finally taken off”. The function was also attended by education minister Pankaj Bora, minister of state for planning and development Himanta Biswa Sarma, Amtron managing director M.K. Yadava, its chairman Idris Ali, NIIT president . Balasubramaniam and CMC general manager Alok Bhattacharjee.

The project will be implemented in 200 select schools during the first phase. Amtron has been appointed as the consultant for the project to be implemented under the “Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) Scheme” of the government. The course comprises lessons in spoken English and multimedia-based computer training in science, mathematics and social studies. The students will also be taught to handle Internet, MSNET, Java, MS Office Suite and given exposure to open-source technologies.

The NIIT has been asked to implement the project in 160 schools and the CMC in 40 schools in the first phase. The first phase will be over in two weeks.

Planning and development minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said the objective of the project was to provide quality computer education to students free of cost. The project will particularly benefit the rural students.

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