By Dr. Dinesh K. Tyagi, CEO-CSC SPV
CSCs have become an instrument of change, especially for empowering rural citizens through the use of digital technologies. With the support of present Government, CSCs are now influencing almost all walks of rural life and promoting a digitally inclusive society. The CSC entrepreneur is now well recognized, respected and trusted by the community he/she serves. From digital and financial literacy to promoting women’s health and hygiene, telemedicine and delivery of various Government and non-Government services, CSCs cater to the requirement of all segments of the society.
The strength of the CSC can be utilized for promoting innovation, which can simplify the life of those living in rural India and support the rural citizens in optimum use of resources thereby enhancing his/her income and standard of living. Rural India has great potential for innovation. Similarly, rural folks have the necessary inclination and attitude to innovate. What is popularly known as “Jugaad technology” is actually an innovation by the rural person to find solution to various problems within the given constrain. Innovation already exists to some measure in almost every village. What is required is to identify, document, create framework for replication and design a business model. CSC VLEs are well equipped in this aspect. They can document all such innovation, share with the central team and we can help promote them.
Some of the innovation issues which can be addressed are – grinder for making Neem oil, making fibre from Gobar and rice husk, rural food recipes, tribal medicine/ Ayurveda medicine for various diseases, making water filter through local materials, use of cow urine for medicine purpose, etc. There are innumerable such opportunity in rural India. CSC VLEs are capable of addressing many such issues. We can create a CSC Rural Innovation Lab for such initiatives. Innovation is also essential for the survival of CSC movement. CSC entrepreneur can establish to the world the capability and potential for enabling such micro-level innovation which helps simplify life of the person in villages. Business opportunity in all such ventures is tremendous as is the risk. Even documenting all innovation itself provides huge opportunity.
Rural Innovation Hub will redefine the role of CSC and we can get support from various institutions to promote this. I am sure we can do better than many of the traditional labs involved in such venture. It is time for us to work towards establishing CSC’s relevance for promoting innovation. firstname.lastname@example.org