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Ambani pitches for new regulation on data protection

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New Delhi, Oct 5 Billionaire Mukesh Ambani on Monday pitched for the government framing new regulation to protect data and ensure data privacy, saying nations will increasingly compete on digital capital in the coming decades.
Ambani, who has been a votary of data nationalisation, said India has a unique advantage to harness enormous digital capital for Artificial Intelligence (AI) driven development that is “bottom-up and inclusive”.
Speaking at RAISE 2020 summit, Ambani said the time is ripe, and the tools ready to make India a world leader in AI and to make AI work for all Indians.
“We are confident that the government will introduce a sound data regulation framework to protect this national resource and ensure data privacy,” Ambani said.
Citing India’s global lead in mobile data consumption; its sprawling pan-India optical fiber network through BharatNet initiative; and the Make in India programme, he said the country had all crucial elements in place to position itself as a ‘Premier Digital Society’.
“Together, our economy and society will generate data at an explosive and exponential rate,” he said terming data the raw material for AI.
He further said intelligent data is ‘Digital Capital’ and a vital national resource.
“In the past, nations have competed on physical capital, financial capital, human capital and intellectual capital. But, in the coming decades nations will increasingly compete on Digital Capital,” he noted.
India has unique advantage to harness its enormous Digital Capital for AI-driven development, which is “bottom-up and inclusive”, on the strengths of its demography and democracy.
“When 1.3 billion Indians are digitally empowered, they will unleash a proliferation of new digital enterprises that will create faster economic growth, greater prosperity, high quality employment opportunities, and better standards of living across all sections of our society,” he said.
Ambani, who is the chairman of Reliance Industries, said advent of modern AI is comparable only to the birth of intelligent life on the planet.
“In the coming decades, the total non-biological intelligence will exceed rational intelligence of the entire human population,” he said but asserted that AI will “never” replace the human mind.
Instead, he said, it will vastly expand capacity to solve most complex and pressing problems before India and the world.
AI will enable India to move swiftly towards achieving its ambitious goals. This include transformation of the country into USD 5 trillion dollar economy, making industries and businesses `aatmanirbhar’ and dominating new global value chains, modernising Indian agriculture and increasing farmers’ incomes, delivering affordable and quality healthcare, and education.
The RAISE summit raises hope that the hardships and hurdles caused by the coronavirus pandemic will be temporary, he said adding that India has the resilience and resolve to bounce back and progress faster than ever before.
“Indian industry is ready Indian youth are ready Indeed, the entire nation is ready to implement an agenda that will promote AI for a strong, sustainable and equitable New India,” he said.
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