Govt approvals are now just a click away
Nazneen Sharif
NEW DELHI 1 MAY
NO LONGER will you need to pay endless visits to government offices to get your proposals cleared. Ministry of information technology (MIT) will soon set the pace for hi-tech governance by embracing e-governance in a big way.
The ministry has roped in CMC to develop a software to process a wide variety of proposals, including research and development (R&D) proposals, online. Decisions on these proposals will also be online. Such software will not only get rid of red tape, but will also increase transparency.
Files will no longer have to move from table to table. Officials at various levels will have to give the necessary clearances done online. Such a move will only quicken the decision-making process. Also, these decisions will be open to scrutiny, thus injecting much-needed transparency into the system.
Employees of the MIT have already had a taste of e-governance. They receive their salaries online, air their grievances either on non-payment or delay in salaries electronically. They also have access to their bank account details and can see their balance on the screen.
The entire budgeting in the ministry of information technologyis also done on-line. “We plan to set the pace for e-governance for other departments of the government. We are hopeful that by the end of the year, it would be possible to take all decisions electronically. This would herald a revolution for others to follow,” MIT sources said.
However, the transition to e-governance can be smooth only if infotech is used to spread education.
Sustaining the comparative advantage of the infotech boom will require educated manpower.
Developing skilled manpower makes it necessary to open the doors of higher education to the private sector . This policy will ensure that the supply of IT professionals keeps pace with demand.
The MIT has also chalked out plans to make India an IT superpower by kick-starting the internet revolution, through creation of content in Indian languages and internet-based enterprises.
e-commerce is likely to get a boost with the passage of the Information Technology bill. This piece of legislation provides the legal framework for facilitating e-commerce, recognising electronic contracts and preventing computer crimes.
The ministry of information technology is already developing technology for the issue of digital signature certificates. A procedure for certification authorities and developing image water marking technology for electronic copyright system are also on the agenda.
Source : The Economic Times. May 2, 2000