The Yogi Adityanath government will start distributing smartphones and tablets to final year students of graduation and above from December 25, which is the birth anniversary of BJP stalwart and former Prime Minister Late Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
Around one lakh smartphones and tablets will be given to final year students of B.Tech, B.A, B.Sc, MA, ITI, MBBS, MD, M.Tech, Ph.D., and skill development course, among others, at Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Stadium in Lucknow.
A large number of students, including girls, from every district of the state, will participate in the program.
The move is designed to increase the BJP's outreach among youth ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.
The Yogi Adityanath government had announced free smartphones and tablets for one crore youth to "make them technically sound".
In the first phase of the scheme, the chief minister will distribute 60,000 smartphones and 40,000 tablets.
This is for the first time in the history of the country that such a large number of youths are being given free smartphones and tablets.
Special secretary, IT and electronics, Kumar Vineet said over 38 lakh youths had been registered on the DigiShakti portal where registration is still open.
"The largest-ever order has been placed by the government on the GeM portal to companies like Lava, Samsung, and Acer for the supply of smartphones and tablets," he said.
According to officials, to make the procurement process transparent and fair, the order has been made on the GeM portal. The companies have been asked to supply 17.75 lakh mobiles and tablets before December 24.
In the first phase, an order of about Rs 2,035 crore has been made for the purchase of smartphones and tablets. Orders have been placed for 10.5 lakh smartphones at the rate of Rs 10,740 per piece and for 7.20 lakh tablets at the rate of Rs 12,606 each.
Around 18 lakh smartphones and tablets will be supplied by the companies soon.