SAP, a German software product firm, recently opened 25 national digital literacy mission centres in 12 cities across India. The company opened the centres in partnership with the IT industry's trade body Nasscom.

The centres have been opened with an aim of educating and empowering Indian citizens with IT skills through the government's much ambitious Digital India programme.

Delhi, Udhampur (Jammu and Kashmir), Bengaluru, Nagapatnam and Tharangampadi (in Tamil Nadu), Karaikal (Puducherry) and Dehradun, Thatyur (in Uttarakhand) and Bhuj (Gujarat) are among the 12 cities where the digital literacy mission centres have been opened.

According to Dilipkumar Khandelwal, SAP Labs India managing director, the centres will work towards equipping men and women of the underprivileged communities with computer skills, teach them to use social media and how to make use of the internet to avail online government services like Aadhaar cards, PAN cards and ration cards.

SAP is also considering bringing its 15 computer training centres in India under the mission over the next two months in an effort to train more and more citizens. Approximately 7,000 men and women have been trained in these centres since January this year.

According to Khandelwal, SAP's long-term aim through these centres is to train about 100,000 citizens in digital literacy over the period of next three years. The company is fully committed towards the Digital India initiative as it believes it is essential to transform the country into a technology-driven entrepreneur superpower.

Nasscom, on the other hand, has already set up around 50 centres all across the country in partnership with various industry players. It further plans to increase the number of such centres to 125 across the country by March next year.
"The partnership with SAP epitomises industry's commitment towards Digital India. We encourage corporates to take SAP's example and utilise their CSR (corporate social responsibility) funds to strengthen the digital literacy initiative to bridge the digital divide," said Nasscom chairman Ganesh Natarajan in a statement to a national daily.

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