Updesco – Enabler of IT Services : Rakesh Kumar Singh

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Rakesh Kumar Singh,  Managing Director, Updesco

As a multidisciplinary consultancy organisation, Updesco provides systems backup to government departments, PSEs and non-government agencies for diagnosis, estimating the magnitude of problems and suggesting methods of improvement, Rakesh Kumar Singh, Managing Director, Updesco, tells Elets News Network (ENN)

Tell us about something about the genesis of UPDESCO and its functions.
The Uttar Pradesh Development Systems Corporation Limited (UPDESCO) is a PSU of the Government of Uttar Pradesh. It was set up on March 15, 1977 under Section 21 of the Companies Act 1956 and works under the overall administrative control of Information Technology & Electronics Department of the State.

It is a multidisciplinary consultancy organisation providing systems backup to government departments, public sector enterprises and other non-government agencies in diagnosis, and estimating the magnitude of problems, identifying technological and other alternatives and suggesting methods of improvement.

Over the years, UPDESCO has provided consultancy services in the fields of IT/ICT, Project and Management and Rural Development and Survey by way of technical and infrastructural support, project preparations, capacity building arrangements, technical manpower provisioning, and policy implementation for the departments within and outside the State.

Who are the major clients of UPDESCO?
Since its inception, UPDESCO has completed a number of consultancy assignments for the State and outside State departments as well as agencies like International Labour Organisation (ILO), Unicef, World Bank, etc.

Some of the departments/entities UPDESCO is currently associated with include Mid Day Meal Authority, Basic Education, Bal Vikas Seva Evam Pushtahar, Women and Child Development, MGNREGA Cell under Rural Development, Home (Police), Technical Education, Higher Education, Secondary Education, Energy, Forest, Agriculture, Social Welfare, Training and Employment, Minor Irrigation, Chief Minister’s Computer Cell, etc.

Please give a brief about the major achievements of the Corporation.
The major achievements in the recent past among various successful assignments handled by UPDESCO are:
• Establishment and Operationalisation of UP State Data Centre:
As the State’s nodal agency, UPDESCO has successfully set up UP State Data Centre by selecting TCS as the Data Centre Operator. It is a major core infrastructure project under the National e-Governance Plan (NeGP) of the central government and is being used as centralised reservoir for data, information and services for the State Government departments. The SDC is currently hosting the applications and databases of various departments including Commercial Tax, Basic Education, Social Welfare, Police (CCTNS), Urban Development etc.

• Computerisation of Electoral Processes for Election Department
UP was among the early States where electoral reforms were started by the Election Commission of India. UPDESCO was made nodal agency and entrusted with the task of computerisation of the electoral process in mid-90s, wherein it had facilitated the department with computerisation of Elector Roll and Election Id Card preparation. Computerisation and management of booth-wise data was an enormous task which UPDESCO had successfully achieved, for which then Chief Election Commissioner M S Gill had given certificate of appreciation to UPDESCO. Based on the success, the Election Commission had entrusted UPDESCO with similar tasks in Uttarakhand and Delhi states.

• Daily Monitoring System (DMS) for Mid Day Meal Authority (MDMA):
UPDESCO has implemented and is maintaining Cloud & SPI modelbased DMS in MDMA, UP for effective monitoring and management of scheme for meal served on daily basis in approximately 1.65 lakh primary/upper primary schools of UP. The system has facilitated the department to obtain daily meal count within the same day for meal served in these schools, which was not possible earlier in the manual system.

The system has won accolades and various awards for MDMA at the National and International levels such as Gold Award in category “Innovative use of Technology in eGovernance” at National Awards on eGovernance 2011-12, m Billionth Award South Asia 2011, The Manthan Award, South Asia & Asia Pacific 2012, NASSCOM Social Innovation Honours 2013, etc. Other departments of the State such as Bal Vikas Seva Evam Pushtahar, UP has also implemented the same system for obtaining the count of Nutrition (Hot Cooked Food) distributed at approximately 1.88 lakh Anganwadi Centres on daily basis. Other states like MP are also approaching UPDESCO for same type of solutions.

• Women Power Line (WPL) 1090 for UP Police – A state-of-the-art WPL 1090 helpline control centre has been set up by UP Police equipped with Cloud Computing & SPI model-based computerised system provided by UPDESCO for handling cases of harassment and atrocities against women.

Also Read: Good Governance Top on Agenda

• Women in UP can access 1090 from anywhere and can lodge complaints against harassments meted out to them. The identity of the complainant is kept secret for their protection. The victims are not required to come to Police Station for lodging complaints or pursue the matter. The Power Line first aims at counseling and thereafter, if necessary, takes due legal action against the culprit.

• Dial 100 for UP Police – UPDESCO has successfully implemented computerised systems for Dial 100 setups, an Emergency Response System for effective operation of UP Police for quick response to distress calls from the victims in Unnao, Sitapur, Kheri, Rae Bareli and Hardoi districts. Other districts like Saharanpur, Pilibhit have already approached UPDESCO for similar systems in their districts.

• Technical consultancy to various State Universities – UPDESCO has successfully provided technical consultancy in effective computerisation of Admission and Examination processes for different courses of State’s universities like UP Technical University, Lucknow; Chhatrapati Shahu Ji Maharaj University, Kanpur; Veer Bahadur Singh Poorvanchal University, Jaunpur etc., wherein processes related with registration in admissions to conduct of examinations of registered students in different courses are handled through computerised systems by UPDESCO.

How is UPDESCO helping the Government of UP in getting investments?
UPDESCO being a consultancy organisation did different consultancy works in the past and presented Detailed Project Reports for attracting funds/investments from external agencies like Royal Netherlands Embassy, World Bank, European Economic Community etc., for inception of new projects under different departmental schemes. UPDESCO was also designated as the ‘Chief Promoter’ by GoUP recently for establishing Electronics Manufacturing Cluster in Greater Noida, under which funds/investments are to be attracted from private players for setting up of manufacturing units on plots to be earmarked in 100 acre of allotted land. The vision is to promote and develop electronics manufacturing industry within UP.

Also Read: UTTAR PRADESH — A Pro Industry State

Share with us your future plans.
Apart from establishing the Electronic Manufacturing Cluster in Greater Noida, UPDESCO also has some other plans to execute/complete in future. Those are:

• Cloud Enablement of Existing State Data Centre
UPDESCO is in the process of selection of a new System Integrator, who could do Cloud enablement of the existing infrastructure established in the data centre.

• Establishment of State Data Centre-II
Since the capacity of the existing State Data Centre is almost utilised and there is no scope left for its capacity enhancement, UPDESCO is gripped with the task to provide a comprehensive proposal to GoUP for establishing of State Data Centre-II with enhanced capacities at some other place. The process/formalities for the same are to be started by UPDESCO soon.

• Operation & Maintenance of Existing UP State Wide Area Network (UPSWAN)
UPDESCO has been nominated as ‘Designated Agency’ by GoUP for Operation & Maintenance (O&M) of UPSWAN through a new SI after the current five-year term of O&M by implementing agency NIC is over in January, 2015. But due to some policy-related clarifications, the process is kept on hold and NIC has been asked to continue till a new SI is selected. After getting the clarifications, UPDESCO will continue the process of SI selection and O&M of UPSWAN.

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