January 23, 2012

Datawind seeks 'Made in India' Aakash Tablets

The UK-based major Datawind, the maker of World's cheapest Tablet Aakash will request the government seeking the inclusion of 'Made in India' clause in the proposed tender for the device.

Datawind CEO Sunit Singh Tuli said that that company will request the Human Resource Development Ministry to include 'Made in India' clause and encourage the production of the tablet as most of the parts including chips and software are being designed in India and even the tablet has been manufactured in India.

Since the tablet is made in India, it should come with the clause of 'Made in India', he added. Datawind has successfully brought the $49.48 tablet Aakash in India despite various pressures. The next tender will be issued in two or three weeks.

The HRD ministry had said that the cheapest tablet would be available in the name of project Aakash. However, the Assam government in its tender has included Made in India clause. Even the IIT Rajasthan is likely to consider the clause.

The tablet has been developed by Datawind under 'The National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technologies (NME-ICT) of the Ministry of Human Resource Development programme.

The company had faced a heat from the government, even the launch of the upgraded version of Aakash was uncertain after the HRD ministry raised a question on the performance of the tablet on the reports from the IIT Rajasthan over the quality of the tablet.

Datawind has delivered 30,000 pieces of tablets so far and the remaining 70,000 units would be delivered after the issue gets resolved.

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