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Digital India Event Schedule
Digital India Event

Date: 5th September 2016
Venue: The Leela, Gurgaon


Overview of Digital India Initiative
Digital India is an initiative of the Government of India to ensure that government services are made available to citizens electronically by improving online infrastructure and by increasing internet connectivity.
India is the second largest market of mobile users with over 1 Million mobile subscriptions. Broadband subscription in India is growing at very fast pace; as of Mar 2016, there are over 150 Million broadband subscribers. Clearly, mobile and broadband is connecting the country and mobile phones are the ‘computing device of choice’. To keep up the momentum, the Government of India is keen on developing the digital infrastructure of the country under the Digital India program.

Open API Policy
To kick-start and empower the Digital India program in a democratized form and involve the innovative talent of the nation, the Government of India has launched an open API policy. This set of open API is known as the India Stack and these would enable the ease in integration of mobile applications with the data securely stored and provided by the government to authenticated Apps. India Stack is a complete set of API for developers which includes –

  • Aadhaar for Authentication
  • e-KYC documents (safe deposit locker for issue, storage and use of documents)
  • e-Sign (digital signature acceptable under the laws)
  • Unified payment interface (for financial transactions)
  • And privacy-protected data sharing within the stack of API.

Together, the India Stack enables Apps that could open up many opportunities in financial services, healthcare and education sectors of the Indian economy.


Dr. Ajay Pandey, Director General, UIDAI

Dr. Ajay Bhushan Pandey, IAS, has been the Chief Executive Officer of Unique Identification Authority of India. since July 12, 2016. Dr. Pandey served as Managing Director of Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Co., Ltd. since October 27, 2006. Dr. Pandey served as Secretary of Information Technology at Government of Maharashtra. He served as Secretary to the Chief Minister from August 2003 to November 2004. An IAS Officer of 1984 batch, he has held various positions in the Government of India and Government of Maharashtra which include Director, Ministry of Labour at Government of India, Private Secretary to Minister of Food at Government of India, Collector of Jalgaon and Deputy Commissioner of Sales Tax. He serves as a Director of Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Co., Ltd. He has published and presented several research papers in reputed international conferences and workshops such as Association of Computer Machinery (ACM), Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineering (IEEE), and Society for Industrial & Applied Mathematics (SIAM). In 1998, he joined University of Minnesota, where he obtained his M S and Ph D degrees in Computer Science. While he was in the University in the Minnesota, he taught computer science to undergraduate and graduate students. He is a Graduate of Electrical Engineering from IIT Kanpur.

Dr. Vivek Raghavan, Chief Product Manager and Biometric Architect, UIDAI

Dr. Vivek Raghavan is an out-of-the-box problem solver, serial entrepreneur and angel investor.

Vivek is the Chief Product Manager and Biometric Architect at the Unique Identification Authority of India. He has been involved in the design, implementation and scale out of the technology platform for Aadhaar, the world’s largest identity program. He joined the Aadhaar project just when the first Aadhaar was issued, and was there when the billionth Aadhaar was generated. Vivek is an iSPIRT volunteer in the OpenAPI initiative, to help promote India Stack.

He also serves as Technology Lead and Board Member for Team Indus, India's entry to the Google Lunar X-Prize, which aims to land a spacecraft on the surface of the moon.

Vivek spent 20 years in the field of Electronic Design Automation, successfully founding, running and selling two EDA startups and being responsible for the design and development of multiple market leading EDA products. He has held senior management positions at Magma Design Automation, Synopsys and Avant! Corporation. Vivek has an M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and a B. Tech. from IIT Delhi.

Vivek has an eclectic portfolio of angel investments, including Team Indus, Gear Design Automation, eZeTap, ZipDial, Healthify, and Vayavya Labs among others.

Dilip Asbe, Chief Operating Officer, NPCI

Mr. Dilip Asbe is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) since August 2013 prior to which he had been Chief Technology Officer (CTO) since inception of the company i.e. January 2010.
He had been involved in designing, building, operationalisation and management of large scale payment processing platforms along with strong customer relationships in Financial / Payment industry in the Asia Pacific region for 18 years.
He has played a leadership role in setting up and management of National Financial Switch (NFS) as well as Cashnet, the first and second largest Domestic Switching Networks in India having very high processing capabilities. He has also designed and operationalised one of the first real time mobile top up processing platforms in India. He has comprehensive knowledge of standards such as PCI DSS, ISO-27001, ISO 9001 Certifications, operational processes and end-to-end life cycle management for payments organisation/setup.
He has to his credit major achievements like setting up of entire backbone infrastructure for Euronet worldwide in Asia Pacific region and for Prizm Payments Services in India before joining NPCI. These projects include building Infrastructure, Platform, Implementations and delivery team and global development center.
During his stint as CTO at NPCI, he has designed and operationalised IMPS (Immediate Payment system), RuPay (India's Own Card), Automated Clearing House (ACH) platforms. He has built high capacity platforms and strong team within NPCI, which is processing over 700 million transactions a month.
He has completed Executive Global MSc Management from London School of Economics and Political Science with Merit (First Class) at London, United Kingdom. He has also completed Bachelor of Engineering (B.E.) with Distinction at Fr CRCE, at Fr Agnels Ashram, Bandra, Mumbai.


Sanjay Jain, iSpirt

Sanjay Jain is an active volunteer with iSPIRT, the software product industry think tank, and is an active member of the Open API, and the cashless India teams. To achieve these objectives, he has been working with the NPCI to define the next generation payment systems (the Unified Payment Interface), as well as with regulators and other bodies to help entire processes go paperless. He has been one of the key contributors to help create, and evangelize various govt open apis, which are collectively referred to as the India Stack.

During his career, Sanjay has been responsible for the development of many large scale, high impact systems. He was the Chief Product Manager at the UIDAI, where he led the product development efforts from its early days till well after the launch. The UIDAI has issued over a billion numbers to Indian residents. He was also responsible for the creation and launch of Google Map Maker - a crowd-sourced mapping product that is responsible for Google Maps data for 170+ countries (including India).

Sanjay is also, currently leading the platform development efforts at EkStep, which is a not-for-profit effort to improve literacy and numeracy by increasing access to learning opportunities for tens of millions of children in five years.

Sanjay holds an M.S. in Computer Science, from the University of California, Los Angeles and a B.Tech in Computer Science & Engineering, from the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai.



With a population of around 1.3 billion and an area of 1.3 million square miles, India is a diverse country and with it come a lot of scale related challenges. With a majority of people still living in smaller cities and rural areas, providing healthcare to all is a big task. The doctor patient ratio in rural areas is 1:20,000, versus the urban ratio of 1:2000. What can we do to make it better and how can we make Healthcare accessible to all? What is government doing to fix this and the idea behind the National Health Portal?

There are some challenges which are unique to India, like the pincode and address challenge. Since, there is no uniform way to write addresses in India and multiple localities with the same name, Delhivery, a logistics start-up founded in 2011 spends around 30% of its total cost on fixing last-mile problems, uses a machine learning system that identifies the different addresses and standardizes them in one format, leaving less room for error. This has led to an increase in efficiency of delivery personnel by over 25% and reduction in the time spent on locating the exact address. During this session, we will discuss these India scale challenges and more.


Prof. Supten Sarbadhikari, Centre for Health Informatics, National Health Portal

Dr. Sarbadhikari is a physician and a biomedical engineer. He is regarded as a pioneer of health informatics in India. Since January 2013 he is the Project Director of the Centre for Health Informatics of the National Health Portal at the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, New Delhi. He has been the Founder Director of Supten Institute. He had been the Founding Professor and Head, Department of Health Informatics at Bangladesh Institute of Health Sciences, Dhaka, Bangladesh. With his past faculty positions with the IIT (Kharagpur), the Manipal, Amrita and PSG groups, he has had a wide and varied experience in both healthcare and technology academia. He is the President of the Indian Association for Medical Informatics (IAMI) [2016-2017]. He is a Past Chairman [2013-2015] for Health Level Seven (HL7) India. He is an Expert Advisor, e-Learning Advisory Group of SNOMED-CT, IHTSDO, UK.


Santanu Bhattacharya, SVP of Data Sciences at Delhivery

Dr. Santanu Bhattacharya is a well-recognized industry expert in Big Data Analytics, Digital, Mobile and Social Products & Technology, and has driven over $500M+ revenue in different roles.
He is currently the SVP of Data Sciences at eCommerce Logistics leader Delhivery, has led mobile products for emerging markets at Facebook, founded and ran leading enterprise big data social marketing automation software start-up, Salorix, headed global analytics centers for AOL-Time Warner and as a management consultant, provided strategic advice to Fortune 500 firms. He has been covered in Forbes, Techcrunch, Mashable, Economic Times etc.
Santanu is an alumnus of MIT Sloan, PhD from UMD/ NASA, and B-Tech from IIT, Bombay.

Rajendra S Pawar, Chairman & Co-founder - NIIT Group, Founder - NIIT University

Mr. Rajendra S Pawar is the Chairman and Co-Founder of the NIIT Group, comprising NIIT Limited, a global leader in skills and talent development, and NIIT Technologies Limited - a global IT solutions organization. Under his leadership, NIIT has played a key role in shaping the growth of the Indian IT sector, by creating skilled manpower to drive its momentum. Having revolutionized the IT Training industry, he is now involved in establishing an innovative model in Higher Education, the not-for-profit NIIT University.
Acknowledging Mr. Pawar’s contribution to the IT industry in India, he was awarded the country’s prestigious civilian honour, Padma Bhushan, by the President of India in 2011. Actively involved in India’s key Chambers of Commerce, he Chaired NASSCOM during 2011-12. Mr. Pawar is currently the Chairman of the NASSCOM Cyber Security Task Force that has been set up in response to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision to see India emerge as a global hub of Cyber Security products and services.
Mr. Pawar has been a part of Prime Minister Vajpayee’s National Taskforce (1998), commissioned to develop India into an IT Superpower and has also served as a member on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s National Council on Skills Development (2009- 2014).


Ramesh Jain, Entrepreneur, Researcher, and Educator, Irvine

Ramesh Jain is an entrepreneur, researcher, and educator.

He is a Donald Bren Professor in Information & Computer Sciences at University of California, Irvine where he is doing research in Social Life Networks including EventShop and Objective Self. He has been an active member of professional community serving in various positions and contributing more than 400 research papers and coauthoring several books including text books in Machine Vision and Multimedia Computing. He is a Fellow of ACM, IEEE, AAAI, IAPR, and SPIE.

Ramesh co-founded several companies, managed them in initial stages, and then turned them over to professional management. He also advised major companies in multimedia and search technology. Currently he is helping shape Krumbs for building a Situation Aware Computing company.

His research and entrepreneurial interests have been in computer vision, AI, multimedia, and social computing.


ACM India organized a hackathon at the one-day digital India event in conjunction with VLDB 2016 and Persistent Systems Ltd.

The Digital India Hackathon consisted of online and offline participation revolving around 5 key themes such as healthcare, employment, citizen services, social media and government and agriculture. Students, Developers, Entrepreneurs, Designers and Idea generators came together to build data driven applications and bring in big data and analytics expertise around the 5 themes. Among 9061 participations, the shortlisted teams from the online round will be called for final presentation/demonstration.

The concluding ceremony of Digital India Hackathon will announce 2 winners along with special prizes on the same day.

Keynote: ‘Vision 20-20: From VLDB Mumbai 1996 to VLDB Delhi 2016 and beyond’

Padma Shri Prof. D.B Phatak, Department of CSE, IIT-B

Born on 2nd April 1948, Professor Phatak obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from SGSITS Indore in 1969, and his M Tech and Ph D from IIT Bombay. He has been serving with IIT Bombay since 1971. He headed the CSE department from 1991 to 1994, He was the first Dean of Resources of the Institute from 1995 to 1998. He was the founding head of the Kanwal Rekhi School of IT from 1998 to 2002. He briefly served as head of SJ Mehta School of management, from 2004 to 2005. He is currently Subrao M Nilekani Chair Professor, in the department of Computer Science and Engineering.

His research interests are Data Bases and Information Systems, Software Engineering, System Performance Evaluation, IT enabled Education, and IT strategy planning. His primary research inclinations are in Technology application and deployment. He has guided 7 PhD and over 170 MTech students, and has authored over 50 publications. In the Kanwal Rekhi School of IT at IIT Bombay, which he set up in 1998 (now merged with the Department of CSE), he created a focus on applied research. He started an IT incubator to foster innovation through start-up companies. It has now flourished as IIT Bombay’s Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SINE), and is considered the best incubator in India. He also started the country’s first interactive distance learning program using VSATs. This initiative has now blossomed into the Centre for Distance Engineering Education (CDEEP). Using the experience gained in that initiative, he recently completed a national mission project to train 1,000 teachers at one time, in several core engineering subjects using ICT, through a series of ISTE workshops. By June 2012, his efforts had succeeded in training over 20,000 teachers from across 1,200 engineering colleges in the country. Encouraged by the excellent feedback from participating teachers, the National Mission has entrusted him with the responsibility of training 1,50,000 teachers in the next 3 years, through mega-workshops training 10,000 teachers at a time. Read more...


Panel Discussion: India’s Journey from being data poor to data rich


Ajay Kumar, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Govt. of India

PhD in Business Administration from the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota, USA. GPA 4.0/4.0. Dissertation– Agglomeration,] Economic Interdependence and Information Technology: A Macroeconomic Perspective.

M.S. in Applied Economics from the University of Minnesota, USA (GPA 4.0/4/0. Dissertation – A Multi-sector Trade Model with Integrated Manufacturing Sector.

B.Tech. in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India. First class with distinction.

Date of Birth: 2nd October 1962

Key Experiences

  1. Additional Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Ministry of Communications and IT, Government of India (July 2015- continuing)
  2. Joint Secretary, Department of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India (Dec 2010 – July 2015)

As the Joint Secretary in the Department of Electronics & Information Technology, Government of India, currently responsible for promotion of Electronics Hardware Industry, Also responsible for multi-lateral engagement, including all matters relating to WTO and ITA, for Electronics and IT sectors. Also responsible for tax-related issues pertaining to these sectors.

Have to credit the revival of the nearly extinct electronics manufacturing in the country. Fresh investments in the sector have restarted and global industry is looking towards India as the new destination for electronics marketing. Read more...


Dr. C Mohan, IBM Fellow and Former IBM India Chief Scientist

Dr. C. Mohan has been an IBM researcher for 34 years in the database area, impacting numerous IBM and non-IBM products, the research and academic communities, and standards, especially with his invention of the ARIES family of database locking and recovery algorithms, and the Presumed Abort commit protocol. This IBM (1997), and ACM/IEEE (2002) Fellow has also served as the IBM India Chief Scientist for 3 years (2006-2009). In addition to receiving the ACM SIGMOD Innovation Award (1996), the VLDB 10 Year Best Paper Award (1999) and numerous IBM awards, Mohan was elected to the US and Indian National Academies of Engineering (2009), and was named an IBM Master Inventor (1997). This Distinguished Alumnus of IIT Madras (1977) received his PhD at the University of Texas at Austin (1981). He is an inventor of 47 patents. Recently (2016), he was named a Distinguished Visiting Professor of China’s prestigious Tsinghua University. He has served on the advisory board of IEEE Spectrum, and on numerous conference and journal boards. Mohan is a frequent speaker in North America, Europe and India, and has given talks in 40 countries. He is very active on social media and has a huge following. More information could be found in his Wikipedia page at

Sharad Sharma, Co-Founder & Governing Council Member, iSpirt

Sharad Sharma is a co-founder of iSPIRT, a non-profit industry think tank that wants India to be a Product Nation. He has held a number of senior executive positions with leading technology companies. Most recently he was a SVP at Yahoo! and CEO of its India R&D. Previously he turned around VERITAS operations in India. He also brought AT&T/Lucent R&D to India as an intrapreneur. He was given the R&D Visionary Award by Zinnov in 2008.

Sharad is one of the active technology angel investors in India. He is also an entrepreneur. He co-founded Teltier, now part of Cisco, and is currently the CEO of BrandSigma Inc. Sharad has an Electrical Engineering degree from Delhi College of Engineering.


Sihem Amer-Yahia, CNRS

Sihem Amer-Yahia is DR1 CNRS at LIG in Grenoble where she leads the SLIDE team. Her research interests are in social data management and crowdsourcing. She previously held research positions at QCRI, Yahoo! Research and AT&T Labs. Sihem served on the ACM SIGMOD Executive Board and the VLDB Endowment. She is Editor-in-Chief of the VLDB Journal and is on the editorial boards of TODS and Information Systems. She is currently chairing the VLDB Workshops 2016 and will chair VLDB 2018. Sihem completed her Ph.D. in Computer Science at INRIA in 1999, and her Diplôme d'Ingénieur at INI, Algeria.



Govindraj Ethiraj, Moderator, Television & print journalist, (former) Editor in Chief of Bloomberg TV India

Govindraj Ethiraj is a television & print journalist and Founder & Managing Trustee of the award-winning &, twin public interest journalism efforts that use data to tell stories. IndiaSpend is a member of the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN).

He is also Founder of PING Digital Network, one of India’s largest video networks that creates content in the food to living space, aggregates utility and entertainment content and owns destinations such as &

He also anchors seasonal shows on Indian news television – the current one being the weekly `Policy Watch’ on public service broadcaster Rajya Sabha or RSTV, apart from frequent contributions to newspapers like Business Standard.

Previously, he was Founder-Editor in Chief of Bloomberg TV India, a 24-hours business news service launched out of Mumbai in 2008 and a partnership between Bloomberg LLP and the UTV Group in India. Prior to setting up Bloomberg TV, he worked with Business Standard newspaper as Editor (New Media) with a specific mandate of integrating the newspaper’s news operations with its digital or web platform. Before that, Govindraj spent five years with television channel CNBC-TV18 where he worked from near start-up point and actively drove most of the channels programming growth and expansion initiatives.

Prior to television, he worked in print in The Economic Times, Business World and Business India magazines. He has been a career business journalist who has reported and written on Indian business for the last 24 years.

He is a Fellow of The Aspen Institute, Colorado  and a winner of the BMW Foundation Responsible Leaders Award 2014.