|IV. CITIZEN - IT INTERFACE49. Government-wide electronic information infrastructure will be
created to simplify service delivery, reduce duplication, and improve the level and speed
of service to the public. This will provide the public (business and individuals) with the
opportunity to send and receive, over electronic terminals, the information that currently
passes between them and the government on paper.
Networks and Messaging over Networks is the key and Electronic Commerce technology holds
the key as an efficient and low-cost service delivery mechanism, a National Info
Infrastructure will be put in place for carrying the services/information from government
to citizens. Government and the private sector will invest to develop this infrastructure.
51. The Government should encourage the establishment of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) which will provide access to the Network based services from even the most remote locations in the country.
52. The government and the private sector will collaborate to put in place secure Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) systems, since this is critical to the successful implementation of Electronic Commerce, as well as direct service delivery to citizens.
53. It is necessary that computers are made cheaper to increase their penetration. The possibility of procuring operational second-hand computers at scrap value available in developed countries will also be explored. These can be channelised through ET&T, and NICSI by proper coordination with groups of NRIs abroad.
54. Reengineering of the existing government processes and procedures will be implemented to bring about transparency in working, reducing constraining controls, increasing efficiency and productivity, reducing cost of service delivery, etc. Integration of projects across various departments to provide a single point of contact for citizens for delivery of services electronically will be put in place.
55. Maximal transparency in governance through Citizen charter of every government department and public body will be available to citizens over the Net.
56. The Freedom of Information Act to be enacted shall ensure that the right of citizen to have access to information through Electronic media will be protected, consistent with privacy protection laws and national security.
57. State Institutes of Public Administration shall be reengineered to help bring about IT-Responsive State Governments. (Recommendation No. 98 of IT Action Plan - Part I). Study of BPR will be an essential element in these institutes. Alignment of IT and business requirements of Government Departments, and focus of citizen as a customer to deliver one-stop integrated services will be essential. The institutes will be reengineered to orient their thinking on the Citizen-IT Interface.
58. A National Institute of Smart Government shall be set up to focus on all issues concerning IT-supported governance. (Recommendation No. 97 of IT Action Plan Part-I)) Electronic Governance Institutes throughout the world are concerned with public policy, cyber law, economic development, delivery of services to citizens, constituency relationships and replacing industrial age institutions with the electronic art of governance, i.e., through digital age technologies and networks. A Committee under the chairmanship of NIC comprising representatives of DPAR, DOE, Law, State Governments, Public Institutes of Administration, and the Industry will be set up to work out a detailed proposal for the establishment of this Institute.
59. Delivery of services should be on "Transaction fee" basis. Private sector should partner with government in electronic delivery of services. In view of the enormous capabilities of the private enterprises, they should be involved in public funded projects as far as possible.
60.. A Business Model will be evolved for joint partnership of government and private sector to electronically deliver services on a sustained basis, so as to ensure that the government does not incur any expenditure, while the private sector invests initially, and recovers money on transaction fee basis. This model will be tailored by Central government departments and state governments for meeting their individual needs.
61. Service Delivery Points (SDPs) will be set up at convenient locations for citizens to access services. These will be established by the private sector.
62. At the SDPs, simple, easy to use, graphical user interfaces in local languages will be made available; Extensive user-friendly graphic user interface in local languages to service semi-literate and even illiterate people; Interaction with the services should be through the clicks of a mouse, and touchscreens, with minimal or little interaction with the keyboard and interactive guidance as users work through questionnaires and forms, making them simpler and quicker to use than paper-based forms will be provided.
63. Service Delivery to citizens in rural areas will be facilitated through technology based solutions to overcome the logistics and infrastructural difficulties in the way of use of computers in the rural areas, including non-availability of electric power throughout the day, non-availability of manpower for maintenance.
64. Studies will be commissioned for obtaining detailed information requirements of citizens (individuals and corporate) so as to enable listing of areas where Citizen-IT Interface will help make the life of ordinary citizen easier.
65. Services will be delivered to citizens in Rural Areas in the following sectors on priority:
Wherever the government choose to do this on their own, care will be taken to ensure completeness of data in back-end databases through appropriate commitment of data entry resources. Mission Oriented Projects will be selected on the basis of certain criteria, such as that they should benefit a population of atleast one crore, or population below poverty line or people in underdeveloped areas like northeast.
66. Utilities Billing/Payment is a major problem area for citizens in urban areas. This also holds the potential of being taken up on a commercial basis with the help of private sector using the Business Model. Projects will be taken up for the following utilities :
Smart cards, stored-value cards, Credit/Debit cards will be integrated in the framework of National Electronic Payment Systems for effecting payment of bills to Utilities.
67. Government Tendering/Procurement will be taken up as mission mode project. Electronic procurement and settlement system will be adopted to eliminate the need for duplicate departmental systems. Government- wide single system will take advantage of data once entered in buyers system, as it is re-usable several times in the supply and settlement chain. The processes and data of buyers and sellers have to be integrated to implement a fully electronic procurement system which will enable informed, and transparent decision to be made with uniforms terms and conditions. The following will be integrated :
-Financial Systems integrated with Payment Systems
-Electronic Catalogues for products and services for which contracts of business relationships exist
Price, performance, delivery details, payment mechanism integrated into Catalogues to enable on-line decision making-Transaction sets standardized
EC, EDI, Electronic Bulletin Boards and E-Mail lists will be adopted to support electronic procurement.
68. The process of filing income tax return will be simplified and made electronic. A project in the area will be taken up with the active participation of the private sector.
69. Studies will be commissioned in the systems already implemented by the Central Government, and State Governments where impact on citizen services has been felt. Best practices of implementation systems will be collected and disseminated to all government organizations for replication.
70. In the long run citizens must have unique identification Cards - the Citizen ID. The usefulness of the card will be progressively increased by making it a multi-purpose card, which will help the citizen receive a number of benefits and services so that a single card should help the citizen interact with the Services, make payments, vote electronic, obtain ration card, passport, driving licence , etc. A smart card citizen ID with multi-functions will also be launched. The private sector will be actively associated by ensuring a business angle in the project.
71. For making the Citizen-IT Interface successful, Citizens at large will be trained in retrieving information they need or transaction they want to perform in addition to training the government officials in launching their respective systems.
72. It will be ensured that many Government departments begin IT based information system straightaway to pave the way for practical IT Citizen Interface. The initial set of such systems are given below:
73. Pilot projects will be taken up jointly by the Central and State Governments to demonstrate the feasibility and the usefulness of Information Technology, e.g.: