The year of e-governance 9 things you didn’t have to stand in a queue for in 2014. According the FirstPost one of the biggest promises the Narendra Modi government came in on was that it would ensure government services are available to citizens electronically and people get benefit of the latest information and communication technology.
“Youth belonging to the IT profession have paved the way for establishing India’s new identity in the world. Digital India is our dream for the nation. When I say ‘digital India’ it is not meant for the rich but for those who are poor,” Prime Minister Modi had said during his first Independence Day speech as PM.
As the government embarks on this ambitious project worth Rs 1 lakh crores, here is a look at some of the significant e-governance programmes which made life easier the people in 2014:
1. MobileOne: The Karnataka MobileOne multi-mode service, touted as the first of its kind in India, enable people to access about 4,500 services in the public and private domains. It was launched by President Pranab Mukherjee in December 2014. The service is available across all platforms, including iOS and Android. Services provided under it include payment of utility bills and property tax, booking of railway tickets and filing of income tax returns.
2. Pensioners’ Portal: A web-based portal called Pensioner’s Portal has been created for the redressal of pensioners’ grievances. It also provides information to pensioners on retirement and pension-related issues. The same government department also started an initiative called SANKALP to engage pensioners in social activities.
3. Digital Skills for India: The government, along with chip maker Intel, has unveiled a digital skills training application, which includes modules on digital literacy, financial inclusion, healthcare and cleanliness in 5 Indian languages. The app is available free on the Android Play Store in Hindi, English, Marathi, Gujarati, Tamil and Kannada. Moreover, Intel will work with the Indian government to create digital literates across 1,000 panchayats, a move that will impact five million citizens by the end of 2015.
4. PRISMS: The Maharashtra state prison department launched PRISMS, or the prison management e-governance initiative, the first-ever e-governance programme for jails in India. This initiative began in the Yerwada jail in November. Around 24 modules were installed to store data of every prisoner from his date of entry into the prison to his date of release. Moreover, through a touch-screen kiosk installed inside the jail, prisoners can access their own details easily.
5. RTA’s SMS service: The Road Transport Authority (RTA) began a new SMS service in Telangana for both its field staff and citizens for easier and faster access to data. Citizens can now find out about their latest transactions, whether it is a tax payment or a new vehicle’s registration, through this service. It also helps the field staff as they can easily find out any information about a document or tax payment.
6. eFIR system: Crime and Criminal Tracking Netword and System (CCTNS) was launched by the Odisha government to make the registration of FIRs and trakcing of criminals digital. CCTNS make it easy to collect, store, retrieve, analyse, transfer and share data with police stations across the nation. In the first phase, this system was installed in around 550 police stations across Odisha.
7. eCabinet: Andhra Pradesh became the first state in India in September to hold a paperless eCabinet meeting. Using the app eCabinet, the state ministers accessed all the data and the agenda for the meeting digitally. The data could be accessed by logging into the app on a laptop or iPad. The app is secure enough so that the data could only be shared with a selected few.
8. E-registration: The Maharashtra government in August had launched a facility allowing people to e-register properties. The facility is applicable in housing societies with over 200 houses, where members can avail the facility of doing the registration of their property ‘online’ from the office of the builder. E-registration of voters had also been a popular practice in 2014, with Hyderabad also launching mobile voter e-registration.
9. Digital locker: In a new Aadhar-linked facility, the Maharashtra government developed an online repository for important documents like certificates, degrees, etc which are frequently required to apply for any job and other services. The “Maha Digital Locker” aims to end the hassle of physically carrying important documents like education and property certificates. Uploading certificates like those related to birth, marriage, income and caste certificates on the e-locker will ensure that there is no need to carry them in physical format when they are needed for educational or job purpose.