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Niti Aayog, MeitY Fall Out Over Rs 7000 Crore AI Mission

The Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) officials, in a recent inter-ministerial meeting, have raised concerns over the many “overlaps” between the country’s think tank Niti Aayog’s Rs 7,000 crore artificial intelligence (AI) roadmap and its own work in the area, The Economic Times reported, citing people familiar with the development.

“We have asked the finance ministry to intervene and resolve some of the issues,” a government official was quoted as saying in the report.

However, a top official from Niti Aayog said that the AI mission cannot be the monopoly of one particular ministry, said the report.

“This is not a department issue. It cannot be a monopoly of one ministry. Instead, it should be a national movement and all departments should adopt machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) while ensuring there is no duplication of work,” the senior official was quoted as saying in the report. He added that Niti Aayog would go ahead with the strategy as planned.

But MeitY has been raising objections at various levels as it feels it is the ministry which should be doing AI, another government official told ET.

Niti Aayog’s roadmap includes setting up five centres of research excellence, 20 institutional centres for transformational AI and a cloud computing platform called AIRAWAT, the report said.

MeitY, on the other hand, has sent a Rs 400-crore proposal, on setting up a national AI programme, for approval to the EFC, it added.―CNBC TV18

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