In a piece of news that may finally end the tiff between NITI Aayog and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, the Government is reportedly going to allocate ₹7,000 crore to the former to launch a nation-wide artificial intelligence plan.
According to a report by a business daily, the Finance Ministry is on the verge of allocating the funds to the thinktank, effectively ending the power struggle between the two entities to take their AI projects ahead.
“The expenditure finance committee has cleared the spending of ₹7,000 crore till 2024-25. The NITI Aayog is likely to be the line ministry for this initiative. The Cabinet note is being circulated by NITI Aayog and is likely to be cleared soon,” a government official told the newspaper.
NITI Aayog had reportedly requested for ₹7,500 crore in funding for creating a new cloud platform and sponsoring new research institutes. It had circulated a cabinet note for consideration by the Expenditure Finance Committee back in May 2019. In their AI Strategy Report in June 2018, the NITI Aayog had talked about the cloud platform AIRAWAT or AI Research, Analytics and knoWledge Assimilation plaTform.
It was announced in the interim budget 2019-20 that in order to make AI and other emerging technologies more accessible to the common people, a National Centre for AI would soon be established. It was also announced that a national AI portal would be developed soon.