India’s mapping and surveying agency, the Survey of India (SoI), says that Google Maps are 'not authenticated' and are 'unapproved' by the Indian Government. According to the Surveyor General of India, Swarna Subba Rao, the service is not fit to be used for high-end applications and he urges users not rely on the service. This is indeed surprising considering the fact that the service is used daily by tons of people across the globe to get from point A to point B. The SoI, in fact, says that even Google Earth is unreliable, which is yet another service offered by the search engine giant.
The SoI thinks that both Google Maps, as well as Google Earth, are only fit to be used with casual applications where users don't require high-accuracy. So for instance, if you, as an end user are using the service to get to a park of a restaurant, then it is totally fine since even if the maps take you about 50 meters from the destination, it is acceptable. However, when it comes to high-end applications such as mapping a new railway line or a make canals, etc. the data which Google Maps provide is not reliable. The Indian Government says that they have their own topographic maps for that. These maps according to the Government are highly accurate.
The Survey of India says that the Government does not have any control over the information that applications like Google Maps and Google Earth have put in the public domain. Hence using them for Government approved projects such as mapping a new railway line, etc. makes it a tough choice. Having said that, for casual day-to-day usage the data which Google Maps and Google Earth is providing should be sufficient. In fact, a handful of different apps which users use in their day-to-day life like Uber etc. uses Google Maps to help navigate the users across various locations. On the other hand, SoI has taken initiative to make its own maps available to the Indian citizens. Once it is made available, users will be able to download it free of cost.