Ravi Shankar Prasad
MINISTER FOR LAW & JUSTICE AND ELECTRONICS & INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
HE’S PROBABLY THE MOST enthusiastic of PM Modi’s ministers. Spearheading the flagship Digital India Mission, there’s been no stopping the man— linking Aadhaar to individual bank accounts, or deploying UID for direct transfer of subsidies, or connecting a third of India’s 225,000 villages via broadband—all done in three dizzying years. A mindboggling 78,000 km of optic fibre cabling is what it took to link the villages and allow for direct payment of subsidies, saving an estimated Rs 50,000 crore annually by plugging corruption. Digital innovation consultant Debjani Ghosh, evidently an admirer, says “Prasad is skillfully building the ecosystem for Digital India with stubborn motivation.” In his other portfolio, Prasad is pushing for prompter justice by speeding up the appointment of judges. The ministry has also set up a free legal aid portal as an interface between poor litigants and socially conscious lawyers. In addition, his ministry launched the Nyaya Mitra Scheme allowing for hiring of retired judicial officers in district courts with large numbers of pending cases.