Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) have become the core central theme for most electronic governance programmes being implemented by the federal (central) government departments or those of the states. In a robust e-Governance environment, all governmental organisations should be networked and interconnected. This connectivity facilitates exchanging information among different organs of the government with minimal manual intervention. This is dependent on introduction of principles of good governance.
Some of the key attributes of good governance can be identified as follow: Honesty; Efficiency and Effectiveness; Justice; Reliability; Participatory Democracy; Accountability; Accessibility and Transparency; Equity; Visionary in decision-making, among others. Many of these attributes can be achieved through proper implementation of e-Governance using the state of the art technologies.
When ministries of coal and defence embark on e-Governance programmes, there are few interesting commonalities that come to mind. Coal contributes to 52% of the country’s energy needs. This can improve a lot with modernisation. Both organisations are large, employ a huge number of manpower, and as an organisation are spread across the length and breadth of the country. In an increasingly globalised world, keeping the organisation competitive and sustainable means making strategic decisions.
The key to adopting digital solutions for management means the change management and process re-engineering are well charted out, as is the capacity building of the workforce. The numbers of people to be trained is huge. The combined defence workforce is over a million people strong, and the coal ministry employs as much as 0.45 million people. Such a huge trained manpower can become valuable national asset in the future.
Becoming competitive means following transparent procurement practices and including trained manpower for better management of scarce resources. Introduction of accurate and efficient systems means more value for money. Competitiveness is the key to success, and innovative e-Governance strategies adapted are the key to ensuring that. Improving communications and logistics management in both these institutions will lead to greater efficiencies.
In this issue we are covering both these sectors, besides examining how other e-Governance programmes are faring, be it at the national level or at the states. We hope that you enjoy reading this issue as much as we enjoyed putting this together.