Artificial Intelligence (AI) Breakthrough

Artificial intelligence (AI): AI Arms Race and India


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Artificial Intelligence, Update: AI tools

Mains level: AI future and challenges, AI arms race


Central Idea

  • Hosting the G20 leaders’ summit later this year is an excellent opportunity for India to demonstrate its capabilities and contributions to information technology and the digital economy. The newest weapons will not be the biggest bombs, tanks or missiles but AI-powered applications and devices which will be used to wage and win wars. India must wake up to the challenge to protect itself against the potential consequences of an AI war.

(Source: Indian Express, Article is written by Aasif Shah, a fellow from IIT Madras and winner of the Young Researcher Award 2022 from Indian Commerce Association)

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Interesting: Message from Robot

  • Recalling the conversation between the world’s first human robot Sophia and CNBC’s Andrew Ross, in which he voiced his concerns about advancements in Artificial intelligence (AI), We all want to prevent a bad future where robots turn against humans,
  • Sophia retorted, don’t worry if you’re nice to me, I will be nice to you.
  • The message was clear: It is up to humans and nations how they utilise AI and appreciate its advantages.
  • The astonishing AI advancements are nothing but a warning to prepare for the unexpected.

What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

  • AI is a constellation of technologies that enable machines to act with higher levels of intelligence and emulate the human capabilities of sense, comprehend and act.
  • The natural language processing and inference engines can enable AI systems to analyze and understand the information collected.
  • An AI system can also take action through technologies such as expert systems and inference engines or undertake actions in the physical world.
  • These human-like capabilities are augmented by the ability to learn from experience and keep adapting over time.
  • AI systems are finding ever-wider application to supplement these capabilities across various sectors.


The AI growth in recent times

  • AI has grown significantly in recent times: There is widespread fear that as the usage of AI increases, both blue- and white-collar workers may be replaced and rendered unemployed. But despite criticism in some parts of the world, AI has grown significantly in recent times.
  • Global Market size: The global AI market size was estimated at $65.48 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach $1,581.70 billion by 2030, according to a recent Bloomberg report.
  • Applications and global impact: The growing impact of AI on banking and financial markets, e-commerce, education, gaming and entertainment is changing the world order.
  • Driving forces: The driving forces behind the evolution of AI growth are greater availability of data, higher computing power and advancements in AI algorithms.
  • Many people believe that AI has little bearing on their daily lives: In actuality, we all interact with AI through social media, transportation, banking, cell phones, smartwatches, and other devices.


The Real AI threat: AI arms race

  • An Iranian nuclear scientist was hit by machine gun fire in 2020.
  • It was later discovered that the scientist was actually targeted and killed by an Israeli remote-controlled machine gun using AI.
  • There are a series of similar adverse incidents that spark moral discussions regarding the potential benefits and drawbacks of AI.
  • The AI arms race between countries like the US, China and Russia, points to the possibility that AI can escalate global conflict and pose significant security risks.
  • Smaller countries like Israel and Singapore are also in the lead.

Where does India stand in the AI ecosystem?

  • Investments in India is increasing: According to a Nasscom report, investments in AI applications in India are expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 30.8 per cent and reach $881 million during 2023.
  • Contribution of India: The report further added that although there is a massive increase in global investments in AI, the contribution of India has remained at 1.5 per cent.
  • Centres of Excellence for artificial intelligence (AI): In the Budget 2023-24 speech, finance minister made an announcement about the government’s intent to establish three Centres of Excellence for artificial intelligence (AI) in prestigious educational institutions in India.



  • Of late India has made considerable strides in digital technology. It is currently the third-largest startup hub in the world and is home to many leading technology companies. However, India still lags behind China in terms of overall AI capabilities. China is leading the way in terms of research, development and AI applications, including development of intelligent robots, autonomous systems, and intelligent transportation systems. The current trend of AI development suggests that it will determine future economies and national security to influence world politics.

Mains Question

Q. The newest weapons will not be the biggest bombs, tanks or missiles but AI-powered applications and devices which will be used to wage and win wars. Discuss.

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