Two Community Centers inaugurated in Samtse
The SAARC Development Fund (SDF) has generously provided the funding support of US $ 2.53 million to establish 60 community centers (CCs) across Bhutan as part of the project “Empowering Rural Communities - Reaching the Unreached”.
The components under this project are: construction of 60 community centers, equipping and furnishing of such centers, internet connection and recruitment and training of community operators, and capacity building of the project team. The project will end by 31st December, 2015. The major components of the project have been successfully completed the remaining minor activities will be completed by December 2015.
The Department of Information Technology and Telecom inaugurated the community centers in Sangnagchoeling and Tendu gewog under Samtse Dzongkhag yesterday. The inauguration will also help in creating awareness about the initiative of the government and its services to the people of Tendu and SangagChoeling gewogs.
Inaccessibility due to rugged mountain terrain and scattered human settlements is a big chal- lenge for the Bhutanese government to effectively provide public services to our people more so in the remote parts of the country. The ultimate objective of the government is to ensure that all citizens of Bhutan have services accessible to them in a simple, seamless and easy manner. With Community Centers in the gewogs, citizens will be able to avail most services from their respective gewogs. It is hoped that the time saved by citizens through this initiatives can be used for other productive work to further improve their lives.
In total, the government has established 195 community centers in 195 gewogs, out of which 181 are connected with internet providing online services. The 14 community centers are without Internet connectivity are currently providing offline services and this Ministry is working towards providing connectivity to those gewogs as well. The operation and management of such centers have been given to Bhutan Development Bank Limited (BDBL) starting March 2015 to also provide financial services.
With the establishment of internet connected community centers in each gewog the 29 G2C services, banking services of BDBL banking services through POS machine, insurance facilities of RICBL and pension services of NPPF are available. The government is working tirelessly to add more services such as utility bill payment and postal services through these centers.
The Minister for Communications and Information Lyonpo D. N. Dhungyel and the Chief Executive Officer of SAARC Development Fund Dr. Sunil Motiwal inaugurated the community centers in Sangnagchoeling and Tendu gewog yesterday. The Government officials from relevant agencies, Dzongkhag and Gewog staff, and the public of two Gewogs were present at the event.