In Telangana, all the government departments have been directed to allocate 10% of their respective budgets for e-governance initiatives. A direction to this effect was issued by state’s minister of Information Technology, Electronics and Communication (IT&C).
In an exclusive interview with ETGovernment, Telangana’s principal secretary IT&C Jayesh Ranjan, highlights how the state government has transformed its operations by automating processes with e-governance projects.
What has been the experience of Telangana government in implementing e-governance projects?
The state government implemented 10 e-governance projects related to the departments under MMP and two e-governance projects related to the ICT infrastructure. The departments are: 1. Agriculture; 2. Land Records; 3. Transport; 4. Treasuries; 5. Commercial Taxes; 6. Gram Panchayats; 7. Municipalities; 8. Police (CCTNS); 9. Employment Exchange; 10. eDistrict.
How two state mission mode projects related to ICT infrastructure provisioning – State Data Centre (SDC) and State Wide Area Network (SWAN) have performed?
The core vision of these MMPs is to enable all Government-to-Citizen (G2C), Government-to-Business (G2B), Government-to-Government (G2G) and Government-to-Enterprises (G2E) services electronically available through multiple channels in an easily accessible manner. A large part of this vision has been realized. Almost all departments have online web-based systems for processing citizen services and integrated with a common front-end platform – Mee Seva. Even during and after state reorganization, delivery of citizen services were not impacted.
What are the key benefits state government has been able to drive from e-governance projects?
More than 300+ citizen services from 30+ government departments and agencies are being delivered daily through a common front-end platform Mee Seva, which integrates back-end processing systems of various Government departments. More than one lakh transactions are processed through Mee Seva platform daily. Nearly 4500 service center across the state enable easy access of government services to citizens.
SDC, running more than 10 years, provides centralized hosting for all departments in Telangana government. SWAN has also been in operation for more than 10 years. About 1500 government offices are connected through SWAN. Minimum 20 Mbps Network backbone bandwidth is available to almost all District Head Quarters.
Major benefits includes citizen satisfaction has achieved through online delivery of services through multiple channels (such as web, mobile and kiosks) saving time and cost of travel for citizens (avoiding multiple visits to Government offices); Sustainable service delivery model – nominal service charges enable government to support VLEs and also invest in infrastructure; Availability of large volume of data has enabled data-based Policy Decisions through use of Data Analytics techniques and tools e.g. RBSK system data in Health and Family Welfare department enables early intervention for serious diseases among school children; Better co-ordination and collaboration among multiple government departments e.g. TSiPass, a legally enforced ‘Ease of Doing Business’ for industry initiative.
Has the innovative solutions such as e-Office and use of mobile application improved governance in the state?
Implementation of e-office for office workflow has enabled easy movement and timely approval of files. Use of digital signature for approval critical documents has enabled better security and transparency of processes. Government employees are assured of better security and control over digitized documents.
Mobile based apps have enabled better tracking and recording of events during field visits / inspections in departments. Rule based back end processing of citizen service requests has helped government employee to focus more on exceptions than routine approvals. This has enabled more processing volumes for citizen service requests.
e-Governance projects have enabled government employees to process more citizen service requests in a shorter time than was possible in the manual mode. Digital archiving of old data has provided the benefits of secure storage of old files and easy retrieval based on metadata query.
How do you deal with senior bureaucrats and political leaders whose views and agendas may differ from yours?
Focus on areas of convergence and minimize conflict in areas of divergence.
How do you ensure funds for e-governance projects? What are your ongoing e-governance projects in your state and budgets earmarked for these projects?
The Minister for IT, Electronics and Communication has directed all the state departments to allocate 10% of their respective budgets for eGovernance initiatives in their domain. The Vote On Account budget for Department of IT, Electronics and Communication for three months is about Rs 30 crores, for the year it is around Rs 120 crores.
We have allocated budgets for e-governance and other initiatives. They are: e-Governance projects (Rs 5 crore); Emerging Technologies (Rs 1.8 crore); T-Hub (Rs 5.2 crore); Telangana Academy of Skills and Knowledge (Rs 5.2 crore) and Digital Telangana (Rs 1.5 crore).
What has been the state’s experience with Digital India? What budgetary support you have received from centre?
The state has actively participated in the Digital India programme through the following initiatives. Under the National Digital Literacy Mission, 3,50,000 persons, including ASHA, Anganwadi workers, ration shop dealers were trained and certified. Digidhan Melas were conducted in four major cities in the state with large participation from the residents. Digital Outreach Campaign through Audio Visual mediums was successfully completed throughout the state.
Under PMGDISHA initiative, two lakh citizens were trained and certified. Pradhan Mantri Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyaan (PMGDISHA) is the scheme to make six crore persons in rural areas, across States/Union Territories, digitally literate, reaching to around 40% of rural households by covering one member from every eligible household by March 31, 2020.
State level awareness workshops have been conducted in the following Digital India programmes. They include UMANG – MobileApp for citizen service under NeGD, Cyber Security, Government eMarket (GeM), Enterprise Architecture. More than 10 lakh certificates are integrated with DigiLocker. All the above initiatives have been provided budgetary support under Digital India programmes.
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