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IT dept joins hands with NPCI to boost global reach of hackathon

Kolkata: As a part of its policy of encouraging start-ups in the state, Bengal Information and Technology (IT) department has tied up with the National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) to give a global reach to its hackathon, which is expected to be held after two months.
"Last year, one of the topics for the hackathon (Bengalathon) was fintech. This year, we want to incorporate emerging technologies like block chain, artificial intelligence, robotics etc. in our hackathon. For this, we are collaborating with NPCI," state Additional Chief Secretary, IT, Debasish Sen said, while addressing the 9th edition of Business IT Conclave on "Fintech - Riding on Block chain" organised by the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Hackathon is held to empower citizens to collaboratively solve real life problems by leveraging multi-dimensional competencies like informatics, engineering, social media, e-governance etc.
Making a strong pitch for embracing technologies like block chain, Sen stressed on knowledge sharing workshops on these emerging technologies. A global workshop on block chain was held in April, at the Biswa Bangla Convention Centre.
"After the workshop, a team of five men came and met me. They informed that they have left their lucrative IT jobs and are working on application of smart contract in cross-border trade, for quick settlement of accounts. It takes a long time in the processing of money transactions for such cross-border transactions. Bengal imports Hilsa from Bangladesh, while it exports rice to the neighbouring country. They have formed a start-up company and are working on block chain to facilitate such cross-border trade," Sen added.
He maintained that block chain can also be very effective in tracking criminals, particularly social criminals, as they are often tracked by unearthing the route of money flow.
It may be mentioned that National Telecom policy 2018, which was announced last week by the Union government, has clearly stressed on embracing emerging technologies like block chain, robotics, AI etc.

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