The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Zensar Foundation, a Public Charitable Trust, operating under Zensar Technologies Limited, announced the launch of the first digital literacy bus in Pune. This bus, which functions as a mobile digital literacy centre, is equipped with 16 computers in a classroom-like environment. This initiative has been launched under the aegis of the Pune Municipal Corporation (Urban Community Development department), and the NASSCOM Foundation. The objective is to encourage the national agenda of achieving Digital literacy under the National Digital Literacy Mission (‘NDLM'). NDLM's mission is to empower at least one person per household in India with basic digital literacy skills by 2020.

Speaking on this occasion, the Mayor of Pune, Honourable Shri Dattatreya Dhankawade said , "NDLM's vision of having at least one digitally literate citizen across each household can be achieved only with the support of entities like Zensar Foundation, NASSCOM Foundation and other corporates in Pune. I am delighted to be associated with this initiative, the first ever in Pune. I hope this platform achieves its objective and the citizens make the most of the training facilities on offer."

Mr Kunal Kumar, the Municipal Commissioner, PMC, said, "We are committed towards enabling Pune and its citizens to blaze new trails in achieving maximum success of the NDLM vision. The only way we can build a firm foundation in this area, is with the support of corporate entities like the Zensar Foundation in partnering with us to make this possible. I am excited to be a part of this landmark moment and look forward to more such partnerships to help us make Pune digitally literate at the grassroots level."

Dr. Ganesh Natarajan, CEO and Vice Chairman, Zensar Technologies said, "It gives us immense pleasure to be a part of this significant step towards Digitally Literacy in collaboration with Pune Municipal Corporation. The corporate sector has been reaping the benefits of the large source of information that the internet gives, which has transformed the way we work and live. It is time to pass this power of information to the less privileged and make information more accessible, helping farmers, fishermen, security guards and street hawkers alike in radically transforming their lives, through better earning potential and thus better quality of life. This initiative will help bridge the great Digital Divide, building equity and growth for our country."

"The NDLM is an ambitious project that requires commitment and the spirit of partnership across all levels to meet the objectives. This launch of a mobile digital literacy centre is the beginning of a firm resolve in making this dream, real and tangible. Having it right at their doorstep is sure to encourage a large number of people to participate in the program," said Ms Vandana Chavan, Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha.

Ms. Ruchi Mathur, Head of Zensar Foundation, said, "It has been almost a year since we successfully opened the first NDLM centre in Hyderabad, followed by one in Pune. We have been able to train more than 1000 citizens till date, and with this launch of the mobile literacy bus, we aim to bring this facility within easy reach of many more. We look forward to digitally empowering maximum number of Pune citizens."

The newly launched Digital Literacy bus is equipped with 16 computers and desks to facilitate focused training. The bus will travel across pre-identified slum communities, initially covering Ambedkar Vasti in Chandan Nagar, Kharadi, Pune. Progressively, it will travel to other slum communities/ schools in Pune.

According to the Government of India Digital Literacy is the ability of individuals and communities to understand and use digital technologies for meaningful actions within life situations. The NDLM centres are meant to engage citizens across diverse age groups in communities all over India to significantly impact human development indices. Simply put, Digital Literacy is about being able to access the internet for improving one's quality of life through access to information, income enhancement, government schemes, utility services such as bill payments and other online services.

The National Digital Literacy Mission (‘NDLM') with a vision to empower at least one person per household with digital literacy skills by 2020, is expected to touch the lives of more than 250 million individuals over the next few years. The project aims at helping adults with low technological literacy develop the skills they need to interact in an increasingly digital world, thereby increasing the opportunity for development and economic viability.

About Zensar Foundation (http://www.zensar.com/about-us/csr) Zensar Foundation, a Public Charitable trust operating under Zensar Technologies Limited, leads the company's philanthropic outreach programs which are mainly in the areas of Community Development, Employability Enhancement and Environment Sustenance.

About NASSCOM Foundation (www.nasscomfoundation.org ) NASSCOM Foundation currently serves as the industry's Secretariat for the National Digital Literacy Mission. The vision is to leverage Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) for empowering and transforming the lives of the underserved. One of the primary reasons behind the formation of the Foundation was the commitment of NASSCOM and its member companies to promote social development through the application of ICT.

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