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Government Gazette

Internet is indispensable in English and IT promotion

It was very recently the Government made its announcement by naming this year as the year of English and IT. Though it’s little late we must appreciate the forward step taken by the Government in the interest of our people.

This initiative of the Government clearly reflects its commitment and the interest it is having towards the development of IT industry in Sri Lanka. This is one of the promises given in Mahinda Chinthanaya. Gradually, yet steadily now this is turning in to the reality.

English language

Teaching computer skills while still very young

As we all know the English and IT cannot be separated from each other so easily. The mutual relationship these two are having is remarkable. For instance, most of the computer based programs were designed and programmed using English as the language.

However one could learn to use a computer in Sinhala. That’s our native language. But when it comes to interact with the other countries many problems could arise. Therefore, the English language is playing a key role in IT industry in all aspects.

However English could not be another barricade in computer learning. But knowing English would be an extra qualification. A person with a little knowledge in English could use a computer for domestic tasks such as typing, accessing the Internet, graphic designing and for entertainment.

But some degree of English knowledge would be required for further studying. Hence the rural community would learn English if there was any requirement for them to do so. Therefore creating an objective is all what we need to do if we really needed to promote English in the country.

In this context the computer would be a wise choice to enhance one’s English knowledge especially in the rural community. Naturally people would love to learn computers. Boys and girls are the enthusiasts.

Therefore this trend could be used to achieve our goal; learning English with the aid of computers. Obviously this will be a challenging task. But commitment and strategy really helps to overcome these challenges that we might find in the future. Apart from these challenges there are other elements too.

Internet connection

Having a computer today is useless without having an Internet connection. There is nothing much one could do with his computer without having an Internet connection. To unleash its powers a computer must be connected to the Internet. This allows users to access the information and services in the Internet with the movement of their finger tips.

Internet is more or less a multipurpose service which is capable of delivering many services to its users affordably yet with great efficiency.

Having identified this, many Governments in the world has taken certain measures to promote the Internet growth in their respective countries.

Internet flourishes with the Government. We could find handful of examples from South Korea to Western Europe where Internet became dominant simply because of Government’s leadership. The Government could play a significant role in the Internet promotion in any society. The same way the Government takes the leadership in education and health care the Government must take the leadership in promoting Internet in respective societies.

Internet services

Even though the Sri Lankan Government took certain measures to promote Internet in the country we have failed to deliver the right thing to the society as yet.

In a successful model the majority of people in the country could access the Internet irrespective of their social levels and place of living. But this is not possible in Sri Lanka. Highly priced Internet services with different service levels have prevented the user from accessing the Internet. This situation is more critical in rural areas.

The time has come to change this. We have used number of plans and methods in the process of promoting Internet in the country; these projects were given with attractive names to distinguish their importance in the society. But none of these projects or initiatives was able to deliver the intended benefits to our people.

The majority of Sri Lankans are still not provided with a medium to access the Internet to get their day to day tasks done quickly and efficiently.

If the Government continued this stale methods and strategies it would take another decade to get all citizens in to the stream of Internet.

Modern technology

As a country this is something we can ill afford. The economic transformation process must be carried out in the country with the aid of modern technology. In this regard the place occupied by the high speed broadband Internet is unmatched.

The right integration of high speed Internet could bring number of social and economic benefits to our society that no other technology would deliver. Therefore the Government must make plans, change methods and adopt new strategies where possible to assure the growth of Internet in Sri Lanka.

The Government must welcome high speed broadband Internet. To achieve the best out of this, nation wide priority must be given and specific time table should be selected to make sure that the country could achieve its intended benefits timely.

This allows the Government to make adjustments and alter its planes at appropriate times where necessary. Since IT is recognized as an evolving thing this flexibility would be required to maintain from start to the very end. On the other hand static plans would be inappropriate and it could make the entire project futile.

Firstly the Government must announce its embracement of high speed broadband Internet to the society. This recognition from the Government could deliver an important message to the society about high speed broadband Internet.

All possible government services must be converted and made available online for the use of the public. In this regard to increase and motivate the public to use online based services more frequently, incentives and concession schemes must be brought in an attractive way.

Public utility services

The iconic public utility services such as telephone, electricity, tax payments and license renewals could offer its services to the public at the initial stage.

To cope up with the oncoming demand all Government web sites must be built with embedded intelligent-interactive features. Most of the Government web sites that are found under the domain name gov.lk do not provide an adequate service to its users. In this context, promoting Internet in Sri Lanka could not be possible as long as the Government stays away from the Internet.

However the Government’s Internet embracement alone would not be sufficient to increase country’s Internet penetration. There are certain other elements that need attention. Among them high speed broadband policy is significant.

Today country’s broadband Internet operates in a policy vacuum situation. However many fronts with different goals and agendas are trying to increase the Internet penetration in the country. This lack of coordination among institutes would have been the reason for Internet not to become a success in Sri Lanka.

A common national program backed by the Government is essentially needed if we really wanted Internet to be the dominant player in our economy. In this regard manifest or policy for high speed broadband Internet must be implemented with immediate effect.

English and IT vigorously flourish with the Internet. For certain this would accelerate the English and IT growth in the country in more effective way than anything else could do. Therefore the national goal in English and IT literacy could be achieved easily in a shorter time period if we took the advantages of Internet timely. [email protected]


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