In a move aimed at making panchayat heads conversant with computers so as make their everyday working easier, the district administration is offering them computer training through colleges. The training is sponsored by Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Yojana and is organised by the State Institute of Rural Development.

The programme will cover all panchayat heads by grouping them in batches and making them attend it in a few colleges.

The district administration has provided all the panchayat offices with a computer having Internet facility, and a printer. This is being used by the secretaries of the panchayat heads. The training will help them the computers.

The content includes computer basics, MS office, MS word, MS excel, Internet use, sending and receiving e-mails, Open Source Software, web browsing, and taking printouts. The participants are taught to operate on the Bharat Operating System Solutions (BOSS) of the Government.

I. Sasikumar, Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, Maharaja Arts and Science College, who is the training coordinator in the college, says that staff of the college were initially trained on the content.

“It was very different teaching these people. A few of them are not even literate. They do not even know to sign their names in Tamil. The training cannot be conducted in a classroom using a chalk and a board. Our staff had to personally assist each participant,” he said.

But their efforts did not go in vain. When the first batch completed on Saturday, the participants were happy that they had learnt something different. But they wanted the training to be a little longer to comprehend the basics better.

Though they were able to learn the operations, the thing they dreaded the most was typing on the keyboard. Identifying the alphabets and typing took some effort and time.

The trainers say that usually the contents are delivered in three months and it is a little difficult to make these people learn it in a week.

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