Akodara village in Sabarkantha district of Gujarat recently has earned the title of becoming first digital village in India.
The village, which sustains a total population of 1191 people, uses various cashless systems for payments of goods and services. All transactions in the village are carried out through digital modes like net-banking, SMS or debit cards.
• Akodara, which is located some 90 km from Ahmedabad, was adopted and developed by the ICICI Foundation as a digitised village with a rural branch of the bank.
• In the village, most transactions between Rs. 10 and Rs. 5000 are done via SMS. The payment goes directly into the shopkeeper’s bank account as the buyer and seller are both connected through their accounts in the same bank.
• The village has its own website: http://akodara-digitalvillage.in.
• Its wi-fi with high speed broadband connectivity has some 50 subscribers across 200-odd households.
• The wi-fi facility also enables farmers to access the latest price of agricultural commodities on NCDEX, with the bank acting as a hub for business activity.
• The ICICI Bank has developed a dedicated and customised SMS banking platform and software for the village to enable users to do basic banking transactions in English and Gujarati.
• The bank has also developed a micro-ATM-based solution to facilitate the local mandi commission agents to make payments to farmers for their produce.