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should Internet be regarded as an essential service, and access to it as a fundamental right? Analyse amidst the fault lines created by digital divide and differential access.

Topic:  Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation. Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.

6. should Internet be regarded as an essential service, and access to it as a fundamental right? Analyse amidst the fault lines created by digital divide and differential access. (250 words)

Reference: Indian Express

Why this question:

The author highlights in what way the fault lines created by digital divide and differential access are being underlined by coronavirus crisis and that It’s a sobering warning.

Key demand of the question:

Present your arguments as to whether Internet be regarded as an essential service, and access to it as a fundamental right. One must explain the impact of digital divide on the poor especially in the cases of crisis such as that being witnessed currently by the world- the corona crisis.

Directive:

Analyze – When asked to analyse, you have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts and present them as a whole in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Highlight why Internet and access to it becomes important element in today’s times.

Body:

Define digital divide – the gulf between those who have ready access to computers and the Internet, and those who do not.

Discuss how and why in an information society, unequal access to the Internet creates and reproduces socio-economic exclusions.

Explain what are the impact and challenges of internet access and digital literacy on socio-economic development?

Present the case amidst the corona pandemic; take hints from the article and justify your answer.

Conclusion:

Conclude by highlighting the role of the present government in this direction while suggesting suitable measures to address the problem.