BJP supports free software, campaigners upbeat

March 15th, 2009 - 3:45 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, March 15 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in its vision document has come out in favour of free software and open source programmes. While politicians are known to be lavish with pre-poll promises, open source campaigners are upbeat over the move.
The BJP Saturday said that if voted to power it will support the use of software based on open - or free - sources in all government-related matters.

The country’s small but active Free Open Source Software (FOSS) campaigners are upbeat on the move.

“The Left, specially the Communist Party of India-Marxists, have also been supportive in taking stand against software patents in India, and are in favour of open standards,” Venkatesh Hariharan of Red Hat India and a FOSS lobbyist told IANS.

“Of the major parties, only the Congress is left to take a stand,” he argued.

“As a long time supporter of free and open source software, I am delighted to see a major Indian political party, the BJP, endorse our stance. However, I am even more delighted to see that this endorsement is rooted in a comprehensive vision for India’s development.”

At a site called public-software.in, campaigners argue: “FOSS is software which grants right to users to study, change, and improve its design through the availability of source code. The open, inclusive and participatory nature of FOSS is a natural fit for the vibrant traditions of Indian democracy and its emphasis on sharing knowledge.”

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