The three-day-long first Digital Economy Working Group (DEWG) meeting under India’s G20 presidency was inaugurated in Lucknow by Yogi Adityanath, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, and Ashwini Vaishnaw, Union Minister of Communications, Electronics and Information Technology and Railways. Other members included Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey, Union Minister for Heavy Industries; Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship; Alkesh Kumar Sharma, Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology; Durga Shankar Mishra, Chief Secretary of Uttar Pradesh; and foreign delegates amongst others.

During the event, an exhibition was also inaugurated showcasing virtual reality (VR), artificial intelligence (AI) and innovative solutions such as ASK AI, ASK GITA, AI Chess, AI in daily lives, Digital India journey, Lucknow VR tour and various initiatives of the central government and state government of Uttar Pradesh.

Alkesh Kumar Sharma delivered the welcome address, emphasising the paramount importance of the DEWG in promoting cyber security, fostering digital competency and advancement, and facilitating the development of digital public infrastructure (DPI) in the digital economy. Meanwhile, Ashwini Vaishnaw addressed the audience and explained how IndiaStack can be deployed and utilised by any nation, displaying the potency of digital technology through public-private partnerships. Further, Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey stated that numerous initiatives in the fields of robotics, drones, additive manufacturing, electronics, and control have been approved to encourage the adoption of industry 4.0. Additionally, Rajeev Chandrasekhar spoke of how technology can be utilised to alter the lives of citizens and the essence of governance and democracy.