Need for pro-active approach
PSUs play a vital role in our daily lives. Similarly, IT also plays a major role in our daily lives. So, if we want to grow faster in this modern era, we need to have IT in place, and use it for the growth we want to achieve. Efficiency, transparency and accountability are the three factors that every organisation wants to have and technology can help achieve all the three. However, the most important thing to understand is the better usage of IT if one needs to share the information efficiently. Also, when we share it, we in a way lose control over it, which increases the security scope needed and the compliance factor requirement. So, that is why, security and compliance are not the biggest admirers of sharing. As we are living in an IT world, we require data confidentiality, data integrity, authenticity, etc. Moreover, the IT Act of India mentions that if any organisation is holding some sensitive data of any user or organisation, there should be reasonable practices through which that data needs to be secured, and if the data is being compromised, certain penalties would be slapped. Besides, data breaching is also a major problem. To avoid all this, we need to think ahead of hackers, which requires a pro-active approach.
Encouraging integrity and transparency in PSUs
With regard to PSUs, the most important interest that we are looking at is financial. There are leakages which need to be plugged, and vigilance and security can play a key role for the same. Talking about vigilance, it plays a crucial role in protecting the honest officers. It is so because unless we protect the honest officials, the decision-making process actually gets impeded. As far as the safeguarding role is concerned, PSUs play a role which is much beyond even the financial safeguarding. We are basically looking at stopping revenue leakages, which can happen while doing procurements of various goods or services. Apart from that, vigilance also plays an important role in terms of preventing corruption. We also take various surveillance mechanism and conduct inspection etc., to ensure that malpractices could be put to end. Thus, vigilance can improve the decision-making mechanism in a country by reducing discretion, placing right kind of systems in place, etc. Similarly, we can have system-improvement measures, which can improve the system itself, leading to higher productivity or improved business processes.
Leveraging technology to enhance transparency in PSUs
Central Coalfields Limited (CCL) being a subsidiary of the Coal India Limited, we are using many technological interventions to strengthen the management in safeguarding the interests of PSU. A part of the inhumanity of a computer is that once it is completely programmed and works smoothly, it is completely honest. Keeping this in mind, vigilance department in CCL is working to enhance transparency, efficiency and accountability by leveraging technology as per the mandate of the Central Vigilance Commission. The Ministry of Coal and the CIL are using technological interventions in day-to-day working. There was a requirement of unified solution to process all functions of CCL in order to streamline the working and recording system. So, we implemented an ERP-like solution, called Coalnet. For transparency and accountability in carrying out the business, we have implemented various IT initiatives like e-procurement, e-tendering with reverse auction, online billing and tracking system, etc. in the past two years. We have also implemented GPRS and GPS-based traffic systems, along with RFID-based system and CCTV cameras along the command zone.