(IGP) Special Current Affairs Material for IAS (Pre) 2013 - PIB "Topic : E-Governance Initiatives-Changing Lives For The Better"

(IGP) Special Current Affairs Material for IAS (Pre) 2013

Chapter: Gist of Press Information Bureau Articles

Topic: E-Governance Initiatives-Changing Lives For The Better

Q. How e-Government initiatives helping people?

Service s provided through the various e-Government initiatives assist Governments in reaching the yet ‘unreached’ and thereby contribute to poverty reduction in rural and far-flung areas by increasing access to critical information and opportunities. At the same time, this process also enables involvement and empowerment of marginalized groups through their participation in the government process.

Q. National e-Governance Plan (NeGP)?

The National e-Governance Plan was approved by the Cabinet in May 2006 with a vision to provide Public services to the common man in his locality at affordable costs. The NeGP is a multi-stakeholder programme which primarily focuses on making critical public services available and promoting rural entrepreneurship.

Q. What are the major highlights of National e-Governance Plan (NeGP)?

Since its approval, many milestones have been achieved under the Plan.

  • While Mission Mode Projects such as MCA21 and Pensions are successfully providing services to their respective stakeholders through their respective portals, extensive outreach has been achieved for those in need of assisted access to public services through establishment of over 87,000 Common Services Centers (CSC) across 30 States & UTs of our country to provide access to approximately 60 million people residing in nearly 500,000 villages.

  • The Department of Information Technology (DIT) plans to complete the roll out of 100,000 CSCs across 600,000 villages by March 2011.

  • The CSC Scheme shall be further extended by DIT to cover remaining 150,000 Panchayats. This is by far, the biggest project of its kind anywhere in world. It is also unique in its perspective because perhaps for the first time it is being effectively demonstrated that a Public Private Partnership model can work successfully and can be self sustainable in delivering a basket of services to essentially rural and underserviced section of the society. It is estimated that over 100,000 rural micro enterprises have been created as a result of implementation of the CSC Scheme.

  • These Centers provide access to over 100 different types of public and private services including but not limited to enrolment & job cards under MGNREGS, copy of Record of Rights, telemedicine enabled diagnostics, access to financial services such as insurance & micro finance, utility services such as payment of utility bills, employment services such as vocational, soft skills and language training, booking of tickets, recharge of mobile phones etc.

  • It is envisaged that very soon several other services critical to rural populace including all services provided by Gram Panchayats and other social services under rural development, health and employment shall be ubiquitously accessed through the Common Services Centers.

  • Significant progress has been made in the other two core e-infrastructure pillars of the National e Governance Plan consisting of State Wide Area Networks (SWAN) and State Data Centres (SDC).

Q. What is SWAN Scheme?

  • State Wide Area Networks (SWAN) scheme, at an estimated outlay of Rs 3334 crores, was approved by the Government of India in March 2005.

  • The objective has been to provide a country wide secure network for delivering G2C and G2G services interconnecting each State/UT Headquarter and each District HQ with the Block HQ via lease lines with minimum 4 Mbps bandwidth capacity between each State/UT headquarter and District headquarter, and minimum 2 Mbps bandwidth between Districts headquarter and Block/Taluka headquarter. At present, 23 State Wide Area Networks are operational across the nation, while 2 are in advanced stage and 4 are in progress. SWAN will be operational in all States by June 2011.

Q. What is State Data Centre (SDC)?

  • The State Data Centre (SDC) is one of the core infrastructure pillars of the NeGP to be set up in all 35 States/UTs. SDCs planned for each state are envisaged as state level digital nerve system housing all applications and databases.

  • SDC provides key functionalities such as Central Repository of the State, Secure Data Storage, Online e-Delivery of G2G, G2B and G2C Services, Citizen Information/Services Portal, State Intranet Portal, Disaster Recovery, Remote Management and Service Integration.

Q. What is National Population Register?

The Government has initiated the creation of National Population Register (NPR) by collecting specific information of all usual residents in the country during the House-listing and Housing Census phase of Census 2011, during April 2010 to September 2010. The NPR is a comprehensive identity database to be created and maintained by t he Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India (RG&CCI), Ministry of Home Affairs. It involves digitization of the demographic data thus collected and biometric enrolment of all usual residents for allotment of Unique Identification (UID) Numbers.

Q. What are the objectives of NPR?

The objective of NPR is to facilitate better targeting of the benefits and services under the government schemes, improve planning and security, and prevent identity fraud.

  • The demographic data will be digitized in the language of the State as well as in English.

  • Once this demographic database has been created, the biometric enrolment (capture of one photograph, ten finger prints and iris scan of both eyes) will be carried out for all usual residents aged 5 years and above, through enrolment camps across the Nation.

  • The demographic data and the photograph of the residents will be printed in the form of Local Register of Usual Residents (LRUR), and as per a process defined by RG&CCI based on feedback from the usual residents; any corrections in LRUR will be carried out.

  • This authenticated data will then be sent to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) for de-duplication and issue of UID Numbers. The cleaned database along with the UID Numbers will then be sent back to the RG&CCI, and would form the National Population Register.

Q. What is India Portal?

  • One of the key Mission Mode Projects in the integrated service category under the NeGP is the India Portal. This project has been implemented by NIC.

  • It has been envisaged as a unified portal providing “single window access” to information and G2 C services which are electronically delivered from all state sector institutions and organizations.

  • The first version of the portal is operational and was released by the Minister for Communications and Information Technology on November 10, 2005 and the portal address is http://india.gov.in/.

  • Some of the Demand driven additional modules for Public Participation like Complain & Appeal Module for Central Information Commission (CIC), NGO Partnership System, Business Module of the India Portal have been implemented.

  • There has been an attempt by the National Portal to bring together all online services offered by the Central and State Governments under a single umbrella for various categories of services like G2G, G2E, G2C and G2B.

  • Around 1830 services offered by different State Governments have been added. In addition, the content has been enhanced to facilitate the contribution of Government information and services for example: 7365 forms can be downloaded now from the portal, at least 1830 services, 1420 schemes, 6160 documents, 2239 Acts, and 1444 Rules are available on the site.

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