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.???? Brings the Promise of a New Digital India

On August 27, 2014, the world became a bit more connected as the Internet welcomed more than 400 million Hindi language speakers in their own language.

.???? (.Bharat), which means India in the Hindi language, was inaugurated on August 27 in New Delhi by Mr. Ravi Shankar Prasad, India’s Minister of Law & Justice and Communications & Information Technology. The Minister heralded the start of a new “Digital India”—one that promises to grow e-commerce from around $14 billion in 2014 to $150 billion in 2019.

.???? (.Bharat) was inaugurated on August 27 in New Delhi by Mr. Ravi Shankar Prasad, India’s Minister of Law & Justice and Communications & Information Technology. Bharat means India in the Hindi language.

Written in the Devanagari script, .???? is the Internationalized Domain Name (IDN) counterpart for the country code “.IN,” the English-language representation of India on the Internet. .???? has been among the most anticipated innovations in the development of India’s Internet sector. With more than 22 official languages, the launch of this top level domain begins to fulfill users’ desire to communicate in their native language and create memorable addresses in the .???? name. This will soon be followed by the introduction of the Indian ccTLD in six other Indian scripts.

As the trusted technical service provider for the Government of India for .IN since 2005, Afilias joined forces with the Indian linguistic and technical community to build an innovative capability to handle names in Devanagari script, while taking into consideration the complexities of delivering services in a script that is used by more than one language. This collaboration began many years ago, when Afilias worked closely with NIXI and ICANN to help India secure its country code domains in ICANN’s ccTLD fast track process. Teaming up with India’s Centre for the Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) and the multilingual community over several years contributed to the successful and smooth launch.

As the next era of Digital India arises, Afilias stands ready to collaborate and help deliver the grand vision of the country’s leadership.
 
To learn more about this project, see the policy framework paper that explains the background and planned implementation of India’s domain names in the country’s own native languages and scripts.

By Ram Mohan, Chief Operating Officer at Afilias

Mr. Mohan brings over 20 years of technology leadership experience to Afilias and the industry.

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