Good Governance: Uttar Pradesh to make more information online

Andhra Pradesh led the public perception in trying to ensure that citizens got quick access to information through greater availability of such information through the internet and through public networks. These included records such as land records, farm information, weather information, all information that helps citizens and which was available with great difficult; such information was prized by the bureaucracy and meant a great source of money to the babudom. With more such information being available easily and another useful weapon in the shape of the RTI Act, maybe things can change for the better. Read on more about what Uttar Pradesh can do:

LUCKNOW: Moving a step forward in the direction of implementation of e-governance for discharging government related works, 33 websites of different departments were formally inaugurated on Saturday by chief secretary PK Mishra. Principal secretary information technology VN Garg told reporters that the main objective of launching websites of all government departments was to ensure transparency in functioning of the government.

Besides necessary training to the staff, computer and Internet facility shall be provided to each of the sections in the next few months, said the principal secretary, adding that it would bring about revolutionary change in the functioning of the government. Referring to the importance of departmental websites, Garg said that the public in general would largely be benefited by the information available on the websites. Citing an example, he said, “If a person has applied for a gun licence and wishes to know the status of his application, a simple click of the mouse on the collectorate’s website would do the needful,” said the IT principal secretary.
Garg said that till now the departmental websites were updated by the NIC but now it was made mandatory for the departmental heads to periodically update their website. To provide e-governance facility at the district level, a pilot project covering six districts — Sitapur, Sultanpur, Gorakhpur, Rae Bareli, Ghaziabad and Noida —- has been launched.

This is a very tough call. The political leaders need to realize that once the genie of more public information is available and people get used to this access, it will be difficult to get back. Also, the removal of such a source of easy corrupt money will be a hard take for the babudom :-). and since political leaders at a local level also make use of such corruption, this will make things harder. However, it is very good news for local citizens, getting access to non-secret information is their right.

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