Artificial intelligence (AI) in the field of digital technology is fine but dabbling with 'artificial emotions' will have "catastrophic" results, BJP's National Vice President Vinay Sahasrabuddhe said today.
Addressing a gathering at a day-long Policy Dialogue on Digital Health Governance here, he said, to achieve lasting solutions in the healthcare, equal importance has to be accorded to "human touch" and "mere professionalism is not enough".
"Digital technology is very welcome, and it has its importance. And while it has its enormity, at the same time, it has limitations," Sahasrabuddhe said.
The senior BJP leader, who is also the president of the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR), said, digital technology is good for "getting feedback" from patients and their families.
"The great importance of digital technology in healthcare, lies in spreading information and awareness through smart phones and other means. Also, it has given people more accessibility, and finally the third dimension is greater accuracy," he said.
Incidentally, the Narendra Modi government has put a very strong emphasis on the use of digital technology, with its vision of 'Digital India'.
Sahasrabuddhe emphasised that whatever digital technology that is employed, it should be "a complimentary measure" to whatever efforts we directly put in.
"We talk of AI (artificial intelligence) today... and the virtual has become very, very real, with gadgets and robots and everything else. But, somewhere down the line, I believe, for the society, especially in the eastern part of the world, where we have different moorings, we must understand that while we can talk of AI, we cannot talk of 'artificial emotions'," the senior BJP leader said.
And, the day "we will talk about 'artificial emotions', I believe, we will have catastrophic changes," he said.
Cautioning that emotions cannot and should not be artificial, he also flagged that these days people are not just complaining of physical disorders but "these are also the days of psychosomatic disorders".
"We have emoticons (on Internet)... But to gauge real emotions, the virtual world has its own limitations," he said.
Health services should be effective, smart, dependable, and credible, and unless it is not so, "we can't take it to the next level".