The International Blockchain Congress at HICC in Hyderabad, witnessed up to 2,000 blockchain enthusiasts, over 100 industry leaders, as well as government delegates
The International Blockchain Congress at HICC in Hyderabad, witnessed up to 2,000 blockchain enthusiasts, over 100 industry leaders, as well as government delegates

Hyderabad: Niti Aayog has made considerable in-roads on applying the Blockchain Technology in solving India’s pressing problems, said its CEO Amitabh Kant. India's potential to propel Blockchain technology is immeasurable, especially to prevent data fraud and digital theft, he added.

Addressing a gathering through video-conferencing at the inaugural session of International Blockchain Congress 2018 for which Niti Aayog was a co-host, Kant said that government has to play a leading role in allowing the application of blockchain technology in solving problems related to land registry, health records and fertiliser subsidy distribution among others.

Stating that blockchain is a fundamental technology like Internet, Kant said that this technology will work in the background making transactions more secure, immutable and more transparent. 

If used correctly, the technology can lead us to right used cases in the public sector, healthcare, retail, real estate, insurance and other related areas, he said and added, when applied to government processes, blockchain augments the credibility, accuracy, and efficiency of the practices while reducing the risk of frauds.  

Calling for a greater role on behalf of the governments in promoting the blockchain technology, Kant said the government must look at using this technology beyond banking in various areas such as land records, transportation, managing health records, voting in elections, peer to peer energy transactions, tax and welfare payments, and so on.

A legal framework has to be developed by the government like many other nations across the globe to promote implementation of this technology. Tech Mahindra and Eleven01 partnership is a significant development in making India a blockchain powerhouse. I am happy to see the industry collaborating on disruptive technologies such as blockchain in taking Digital India movement to the next level, he said. 

Citing examples, Kant said that, “Recently NITI Aayog and Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizers & Chemicals Limited (GNFC) signed a statement of intent (SOI) to work together towards using the blockchain technology for fertiliser subsidy management. GNFC and the Aayog will work on implementing a proof-of-concept (PoC) application for using the technology in subsidy disbursements.”

Niti Aayog is also working with Apollo Hospitals and information technology major Oracle on applying blockchain (decentralised) technology in pharmaceutical supply chain management to detect spurious drugs.

"There is a need to use blockchain to track and trace medicines and spurious drugs. Therefore, Niti Aayog, in collaboration with Apollo Hospitals and Oracle, is putting pharmaceutical supply chain in blockchain for complete traceability of drugs from manufacturer to consumer to protect our citizens from the menace of spurious medicines,” he said.

On similar lines, the agency was working with judiciary too to see the civil cases related to land registration and mutation were expedited, he said. Emerging technologies such as blockchain technology were key drivers for ease of doing business and were essential for a free market, he added.

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