Govt gears up to spearheading Aakash-II project
HRD Minister Kapil Sibal had yesterday indicated that the improved version would be launched by April. He had said several other manufacturers including ITI would be involved in manufacturing it.
Datawind, the maker of the device, has so far delivered 30,000 pieces and would deliver the remaining 70,000 units as per the revised specifications, Sibal said, while admitting that there were differences between the ministry and Datawind over the products but these would be resolved.
Datawind was not represented in Tuesday's meeting which was attended by senior officials from HRD Ministry. Sibal is also understood to have discussed the issue with IIT Rajasthan Director Prem K Kalra, spearheading the project, sources said.
The government has reportedly not issue a Letter of Credit to Datawind after receiving test reports from the IIT that raised certain issues with regard to the quality of the tablet.
Aakash was launched last year with much fanfare. The device costing USD 35 (about Rs 2,000) was developed as part of the The National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technologies of the Ministry of Human Resource Development.