The Government is evolving a policy framework for cloud computing to address concerns as well as drive the cloud revolution. The Minister of Communications & IT, Mr Kapil Sibal, described cloud computing as "a fine economic solution in a complex knowledge economy" while inaugurating the 2012 Cloud Summit organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) here today.
The Minister suggested that the focus could be on SMEs and the starting point could be clusters, which have commonality of purpose and vision.
Stressing on the need to build confidence among users, he highlighted the need for outlining technical and other parameters for cloud providers, standardization of contracts, privacy and security conditions.
On the occasion, Mr Sibal also released the CII White Paper on 'The Indian Cloud Revolution', saying that "India was still in the process of evolving appropriate architecture to take advantage of the possible revolution."
The White Paper calls for the Government to play a pivotal role in ensuring that Indian entities can take advantage of the cloud revolution for economic benefits. Infrastructure development will be key government initiative that will provide land, power, technology and human resource to establish India as a data management hub.
CERT Director-General Dr Gulshan Rai pointed out that concerns of privacy, security, compliance and vigilance with regard to cloud arose because of the absence of physical infrastructure at the user-end. He suggested that an alliance on the lines of the US-based Cloud Security Alliance be set up in India to answer all issues and concerns. He stressed on the need for setting up a framework for data sharing.
Mr S Gopalakrishnan, President-Designate, CII, discussed the rights of various stakeholders on the cloud and called for policies and rules regarding the use of resources on the cloud. He hoped the recommendations contained in the CII White Paper would help in bringing clarity on the various issues.
"Data is the new currency," said Mr Kiran Karnik, Chairman, CII National Committee on Telecom and Broadband, adding that it therefore maybe appropriate to look at banking analogies to address security and privacy concerns on the cloud. For SMEs, the cloud posited exciting opportunities for low cost technology solutions and clusters need no longer be bound by geographical considerations, he said.
Infosys CEO & MD, Mr S D Shibulal highlighted the amount of integration the cloud can deliver as also its immense functionality. This gave rise to immense opportunities for all stakeholders, he felt.
Earlier, delegates to the high-powered summit were welcomed by Mr Bhaskar Pramanik, Chairman, CII National Committee on IT, ITeS and E-Commerce, and Chairman, Microsoft India. He called for closer cooperation between various government agencies and departments.
The CII White Paper notes that cloud is a transformational concept that requires an ecosystem to be developed. Power, connectivity and bandwidth, real estate, technology enablers, awareness and local language support make the base of the cloud computing pyramid. In addition, it calls for special financial provisions in terms of cloud infrastructure, loans, tax incentives and land should be made available by the Government for private players who wish to build infrastructure for cloud computing.