September 2011

e-Governance Challenges

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By Golok Kumar Simli,
Principal Consultant & Head-Technology, MEA, GoIImplimentation of ICT within the Department is a major challenge as experienced in 6 years of working. Seminars and events provide a platform to point out the drawbacks at the application part hence direct us to find out the effective solution. Even we have good service providers, beautiful, hassle free and tier-3 data centers, industry partner which provides cloud computing to use various services but we do not have a single service to initiate within the department which we can start with the assistance of national data centers or state data centers. It starts with business renewal process, all rules and regulations to work with, entire re-engineering process, change management within the department, all the staff and employees and sometimes you should fight with the management to do something rolling out within the department.So the main question is, from where we can start e-governance. Plan and then decide to start the e- governance application in a right and successful way probably in a pilot phase quoting an example of Passport Seva Project, which was started 3 years ago and out of 77, 20 Passport Seva Kendra have been rolled out all over the country. For starting this project, there was no problem for setting out the Passport Seva Kendra because there are enough industry partners, support partner  who assists completely but when it comes to the application part which have been running successfully for last 20 years for example there is an existing application to issue the passport. In spite of having an application someone try to improve the processes, rules and bye-laws which can invariably improve the delivery of the services then challenges comes. Once we build our own application and then integrate it with other applications for example UID project which is helpful for biometric matching and identity. While designing the core part of any application you or departments have to decide. Nobody assists you, whether any industry partner, consulting agency or service providers, they are only for supporting function. Core group and champions within the department, who can show the way forward to the industry.

Virtualisation of Data Centres

By Neeta Verma,
HOD, Data Centre and Web Services Division, NIC

Data centers are the core of any e-governance sector for example e-mail, social networking, website surfing etc. Data centers are meant for the availability of existing resources and additional resources which require extra power, cooling and IT infrastructure. It provides the agility to extend the services. Operating cost of data centers are becoming very high because of increasing cost of land, park, cooling and asset management. There is exponential growth in data centers because we are connecting to the digital world. Earlier few people were using website,writing blogs but now it can  be accessed by everyone so huge amount of data is getting into the system. For regulating the things we need to keep this data for certain periods for example medical records for 7 years and certain of emails for 5 years.

Earlier storage cables and UDP cables in data centers were laid out parallel but now those cables are replaced by single cable carrying both things. Through data operation management one can manage the services from remote location thus technology offers cloud computing and virtualization. There are four factors except security  which must be considered to enact this technology which are efficiency, flexibility, availability, ability to innovate users. Automation requires a huge amount of investment and effective management but not ensuring the success so use of virtual data center is very helpful to initiate this technology by leasing for a certain period whether for 3 months or an year. You launch mode of application, services and analyse how it is working. If it works well you have flexibility to ask for more resources but if it doesn’t  you pay for the services hires and come out of it. So whole thing becomes flexible.

We have five national data centers of NIC and many data centers of  large organistions. So, we must avoid building another data center. Consolidation of data centers is needed worldwide not only in private sector but also in government sector. Some countries like US and UK have started this work and other nations will join them very soon.

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