Recently, we had the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar, asking the Centre to consider linking the Right to Public Service Act (RTPS) with e-Governance under centrally-sponsored schemes, and grant assistance to the states to provide basic services to the people under this provision. The Chief Minister was speaking at the launching of newly established ‘Common Service Centres.’ Such a provision can open doors for a new set of benefits to flow to the public.
The thing is that now every state government in the country has realised the importance of e-Governance, so the push for new initiatives has also started coming from the state level leaders. This is an indication of the fact that e-Governance has now attained a wide degree of acceptability. The process of evolution of e-Governance in the country has become even more democratised, as the demand for new initiatives is coming from the grassroots. Progress in online delivery of services has continued through the year 2012. The government at the centre and in the states have put in place a number of e-Governance initiatives and ICT applications for further enhancing the public sector efficiencies and streamlining the governance systems for sustainable development. In 2013, further progress is expected.
The ICTs can only prove to be truly transformative in the governance space, when there is better awareness and understanding of their role in the achievement of sustainable development goals. Such awareness and understanding is particularly necessary among policy and decision makers. Those who are playing a key role in governance should have a view on the potential and risks involved in the use of ICTs within specific development settings. They must have the knowledge of the enabling environment required for the implementation of ICT solutions in areas like regulations, standards, financial, institutional and human resources, etc.
The eGov Knowledge Exchange 2012 was successfully held from 13th December, 2012 to 16th December, 2012 at Udaipur. The Knowledge Exchange was aimed at developing concrete recommendations for actions for development of more efficient e-Governance models. The event was attended by over 100 delegates, which included political leaders, officials, captains of private enterprises and thought leaders. The event contributed to a thorough exchange of information and experience between stakeholders who are engaged in developing better systems for e-Governance.
The current issue of the magazine has an in-depth coverage of the eGov Knowledge Exchange Forum. Through a range of interviews and articles written by key stakeholders in the e-Governance space, the January 2013 issue of the eGov magazine sheds light on the diverse ways by which ICT is being deployed for public benefit. In February 2013, we are organising the SecureIT 2013 Conclave in New Delhi. This is a national conference on public safety, security and disaster management. Security is a key area for the success of e-Governance initiatives. The SecureIT 2013 will place spotlight on the need for securing electronic data, protecting privacy of individuals and guarding systems against unauthorised access. We hope that you will be there at SecureIT 2013 to contribute to the discussion on the new age cyber-security measures that we as a nation must have in place.