E−Gov­er­nance: Gov­er­nance in 21st Cen­tury

Economic Challenger - - CONTENTS - − Hi­man­shu Garg, Gun­jan Goel


E−Gov­er­nance is slowly gain­ing im­por­tance day by day in the ad­vanced world. It is the use of mod­ern In­for­ma­tion and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tech­nolo­gies (ICT) such as In­ter­net, mo­biles etc by Government to im­prove the ef­fec­tive­ness, ef­fi­ciency, ser­vice de­liv­ery and to pro­mote democ­racy. E−Gov­er­nance pro­vides an ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion to em­power ci­ti­zens, en­able their par­tic­i­pa­tion in the government and en­hance eco­nomic and so­cial op­por­tu­ni­ties to ci­ti­zens, so that they can make life bet­ter, for them­selves and for the next gen­er­a­tions. Ac­cord­ing to Na­tional E−Gov­er­nance Plan’s(NeGP) vi­sion−"Make all Government ser­vices ac­ces­si­ble to the com­mon man in his lo­cal­ity, through com­mon ser­vice de­liv­ery out­lets and en­sure ef­fi­ciency, trans­parency & re­li­a­bil­ity of such ser­vices at af­ford­able costs to re­al­ize the ba­sic needs of the com­mon man.". There have been sev­eral suc­cess­ful ini­tia­tives and many note­wor­thy projects that have been un­der­taken in var­i­ous states of In­dia. Bhoomi, RAIL­NET, E−Su­vidha, SARITA, E−Sewa etc are some of the suc­cess­ful achieve­ments. The ex­pe­ri­ence of e−gov­er­nance projects in our coun­try shows that 15% projects are success, 35% projects are par­tial fail­ure, 50% projects are fail­ures. For suc­cess­ful im­ple­men­ta­tion Stan­dards, In­fra­struc­ture, Leg­is­la­tions and Strat­egy all need to be in place. And above all it re­quires e−readi­ness in the minds of ci­ti­zens. The pa­per will be in­com­plete with­out giv­ing a di­rec­tion to our Strat­egy and this di­rec­tion comes in the words of Ma­hatama Gandhi ,". Whether what we are do­ing ben­e­fits the com­mon man in any­way "


E−Gov­er­nance is slowly gain­ing im­por­tance day by day in the ad­vanced world. E−Gov­er­nance is grad­u­ally open­ing doors for us­ing elec­tronic power in cre­at­ing dis­ci­pline in an econ­omy. It is also a way of us­ing mod­ern In­for­ma­tion and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tech­nolo­gies (ICT) such as In­ter­net, Lo­cal Area Net­works, mo­biles etc by Government to im­prove the ef­fec­tive­ness, ef­fi­ciency, ser­vice de­liv­ery and to pro­mote democ­racy. E−Gov­er­nance is the ap­pli­ca­tion of In­for­ma­tion and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tech­nol­ogy (ICT) for de­liv­er­ing government ser­vices, ex­change of in­for­ma­tion, com­mu­ni­ca­tion, trans­ac­tions, in­te­gra­tion of var­i­ous stand−alone sys­tems and ser­vices be­tween Government−to−Ci­ti­zens (G2C), Government−to−Busi­ness(G2B),Government−to− Government( G2G) as well as back of­fice pro­cesses and in­ter­ac­tions within the en­tire government frame work. Its tar­get is to cre­ate an ef­fec­tive, trans­par­ent , dis­ci­plined ma­chin­ery for the bet­ter man­age­ment of hu­man fi­nan­cial and phys­i­cal re­sources in an econ­omy which will fur­ther lead to faster eco­nomic devel­op­ment .


Both the terms are treated to be the same, how­ever, there is some dif­fer­ence be­tween the two. "Government’s fore­most job is to fo­cus so­ci­ety on achiev­ing the pub­lic in­ter­est." "Gov­er­nance is a process of strength­en­ing the re­la­tion be­tween the government and the var­i­ous other en­vi­ron­men­tal per­spec­tives such as so­cial, le­gal, eco­nom­i­cal, po­lit­i­cal, tech­no­log­i­cal etc. So, the per­spec­tive of the e−gov­er­nance is "the use of the tech­nolo­gies that both help gov­ern­ing and to be gov­erned".


The need for good gov­er­nance for In­dia’s devel­op­ment is widely ac­cepted. The chal­lenge be­fore the In­dian government is to look ways to im­prove gov­er­nance through e−gov­er­nance i.e. the use of In­for­ma­tional and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tech­nol­ogy (ICT) which is a sig­nif­i­cant en­abler in such en­deav­ors. In­dia’s Na­tional e−Gov­er­nance plan has paved the way for a sys­tem­atic wide scale im­ple­men­ta­tion of e−Gov­er­nance across the coun­try. "Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast" clearly gives the di­rec­tion in which the e− Gov­er­nance Vi­sion of the coun­try should be. E− Gov­er­nance can trans­form cit­i­zen ser­vice, pro­vide ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion to em­power ci­ti­zens´, en­able their par­tic­i­pa­tion in government and en­hance cit­i­zen eco­nomic and so­cial op­por­tu­ni­ties, so that they can make bet­ter lives, for them­selves and for the next gen­er­a­tions. The key ob­jec­tives of the e−Gov­er­nance ini­tia­tive are to: 1 Pro­vide sin­gle win­dow sys­tem for de­liv­ery of

ser­vices and in­for­ma­tion to ci­ti­zens. 2 Pro­vide in­te­grated and sim­pli­fied ser­vices to

ci­ti­zens on any time, any­where ba­sis. 3 De­cen­tral­ize ser­vice de­liv­ery and im­prove

ac­ces­si­bil­ity of in­for­ma­tion to ci­ti­zens. 4 In­crease the ef­fi­ciency and pro­duc­tiv­ity of

ULBs. 5 Re−en­gi­neer pro­cesses for bet­ter ser­vice

de­liv­ery. 6 In­te­grate data and ser­vices of var­i­ous

de­part­ments. 7 En­hance ef­fi­cient in­ter−de­part­men­tal

co­or­di­na­tion. 8 Pro­vide timely and re­li­able man­age­ment in­for­ma­tion re­lat­ing to mu­nic­i­pal ad­min­is­tra­tion for ef­fec­tive de­ci­sion−mak­ing.


NeGP (Na­tional e−Gov­er­nance Plan) is a plan of the Government of In­dia to make all government ser­vices avail­able to the ci­ti­zens of In­dia via elec­tronic me­dia. NeGP in­tends to in­sti­tute and en­able mech­a­nisms to im­prove the sys­tem of gov­er­nance and thus pro­vide bet­ter ser­vices to the ci­ti­zens by ef­fec­tive use of ICT. E−gov­er­nance in mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties is one of the Mis­sion Mode Projects un­der the NeGP, which is ex­pected to re­sult in im­proved ser­vice de­liv­ery by lo­cal gov­ern­ments for the ci­ti­zens. Im­ple­men­ta­tion of e−Gov­er­nance re­form is one of the manda­tory re­forms un­der Jawa­har­lal Nehru Na­tional Ur­ban Re­newal Mis­sion (JNNURM). This plan was an out­come of the rec­om­men­da­tions of the sec­ond Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­forms Com­mis­sion. It is un­der the ad­min­is­tra­tion of the De­part­ment of In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy of the Min­istry of Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy, Government of In­dia.


The NeGP has the fol­low­ing vi­sion: "Make all Government ser­vices ac­ces­si­ble to the com­mon man in his lo­cal­ity, through com­mon ser­vice de­liv­ery out­lets and en­sure ef­fi­ciency, trans­parency & re­li­a­bil­ity of such ser­vices at af­ford­able costs to re­al­ize the ba­sic needs of the com­mon man". This vi­sion ar­tic­u­lates the pri­or­i­ties of the In­dian government for im­proved gov­er­nance through use of tech­nol­ogy lead­ing to the im­prove­ment in qual­ity of life for the av­er­age In­dian cit­i­zen.


NeGP is mon­i­tored and co­or­di­nated at the high­est level by the Na­tional e−Gov­er­nance Ad­vi­sory Group. Ap­point­ments to the Group were done in first week of Novem­ber, 2010 with its first sched­uled meet­ing on 12 Novem­ber 2010. It is headed by the Min­is­ter of Com­mu­ni­ca­tions & In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy, Government of In­dia.


Find be­low the in­for­ma­tion about some of the on­line ser­vices be­ing pro­vided un­der dif­fer­ent Mis­sion Mode Projects of the Na­tional e− Gov­er­nance Plan:

In­come Tax

1 E−Fil­ing of In­come Tax Re­turns 2 On­line Reg­is­tra­tion of E−Re­turn In­ter­me­di­ary 3 On­line Ap­pli­ca­tion for Per­ma­nent Ac­count

Num­ber (PAN) 4 Check Sta­tus of PAN Ap­pli­ca­tion On­line 5 On­line Ap­pli­ca­tion for Tax De­duc­tion Ac­count

Num­ber (TAN)


1 On­line Sta­tus En­quiry of Pass­port Ap­pli­ca­tion

Com­pany Af­fairs

1 On­line Com­pany Di­rec­tory 2 Lodge In­vestor Com­plaint On­line

Cen­tral Ex­cise

1 Reg­is­tra­tion for Ser­vice Tax Pay­ers 2 Reg­is­tra­tion for Cen­tral Ex­cise As­sesses 3 Know your Ser­vice Tax Tar­iff 4 Know your Ser­vice Tax Lo­ca­tion Code 5 e−fil­ing of Cen­tral Ex­cise Re­turns 6 e−fil­ing of Ser­vice Tax Re­turns


1 On­line Pen­sion Pay­ment Or­der (PPO) Sta­tus

En­quiry Land Records

1 Check your Land Reg­is­tra­tion Records

Road Trans­port

1 Ob­tain Driv­ing Li­cense 2 Ve­hi­cle Reg­is­tra­tion

Prop­erty Reg­is­tra­tion

1 Land/Prop­erty Reg­is­tra­tion


1 Check Agri­cul­tural Mar­ket Prices On­line


1 Ob­tain Birth Cer­tifi­cate 2 Ob­tain Death Cer­tifi­cate

Gram Pan­chay­ats (Ru­ral)

1 On­line Col­lec­tion and Sale of Hand­i­crafts by

Ru­ral Ar­ti­sans


1 On­line Sta­tus of Stolen Ve­hi­cles

Em­ploy­ment Ex­change

1 Reg­is­ter with State Em­ploy­ment Ex­changes

as a can­di­date 2 Reg­is­ter with State Em­ploy­ment Ex­changes

as an Em­ployer


1 Cause list of In­dian Courts 2 Court Judg­ments (JUDIS) 3 Daily Court Or­ders/Case Sta­tus


The government in In­dia has been con­tin­u­ously en­deav­or­ing to pro­vide cit­i­zen ser­vices in a bet­ter man­ner. There have been sev­eral suc­cess­ful ini­tia­tives and many note­wor­thy projects that have un­der­taken in var­i­ous states of In­dia. 1 Andhra Pradesh: E−Seva, CARD, VOICE,MPHS, FAST, E−Cops, AP on­line− One−stop−shop on the In­ter­net, Saukaryam, On­line Trans­ac­tion pro­cess­ing 2 Bi­har: Sales Tax Ad­min­is­tra­tion

Man­age­ment In­for­ma­tion. 3 Chat­tis­garh: Ch­hat­tis­garh In­fotech Pro­mo­tion So­ci­ety, Trea­sury of­fice, e−link­ing project. 4 Delhi: Au­to­matic Ve­hi­cle Track­ing Sys­tem, Com­put­er­i­za­tion of web­site of RCS of­fice, Elec­tronic Clear­ance Sys­tem, Man­age­ment In­for­ma­tion Sys­tem for Ed­u­ca­tion etc. 5 Goa: Dha­rani Project. 6 Gu­jarat: Mahiti Shakti, re­quest for Government doc­u­ments on­line, Form book on­line, 7 G R book on­line, cen­sus on­line, ten­der no­tice. 8 Haryana: Nai Disha. 9 Hi­machal Pradesh: Lok Mi­tra. 10 Kar­nataka: Bhoomi, Kha­jane, Kaveri. 11 Ker­ala: E−Srinkhala, RDNet, Fast, Re­li­able, In­stant, Ef­fi­cient Net­work for the Dis­burse­ment of Ser­vices (FRIENDS). 12 Mad­hya Pradesh: Gyan­doot, Gram Sam­park, Smart Card in Trans­port De­part­ment, Com­put­er­i­za­tion MP State Agri­cul­tural Mar­ket­ing Board (Mandi Board) etc. 13 Ma­ha­rash­tra: SETU, On­line Com­plaint

Man­age­ment Sys­tem−Mum­bai. 14 Ra­jasthan: Jan Mi­tra, Ra­jSWIFT, Lok­mi­tra,

Ra­jNIDHI. 15 Tamil Nadu: Rasi Maiyams−Kanchipu­ram; Ap­pli­ca­tion forms re­lated to pub­lic util­ity, ten­der no­tices and dis­play. 16 Arunachal Pradesh, Ma­nipur, Meghalaya, Mi­zo­ram & Na­ga­land: Com­mu­nity In­for­ma­tion Cen­ter. Forms avail­able on the Meghalaya web­site un­der schemes re­lated to so­cial wel­fare, food civil sup­plies and con­sumer af­fairs, hous­ing trans­port etc. The aim of all th­ese projects is to lay the foun­da­tion for e−gov­er­nance, cre­ate vis­i­ble im­pact of the in­ten­tion of the Government in this di­rec­tion, and fa­cil­i­tate the in­ter­ac­tion of the ci­ti­zens with

the Government to make it more trans­par­ent, pleas­ant and sat­is­fy­ing.


Fol­low­ing are some success sto­ries of E− gov­er­nance: 1 Bhoomi Project: Bhoomi project is an at­tempt made by Kar­nataka State Government for com­put­er­i­za­tion of Land Records. Un­der the Bhoomi E−gov­er­nance project of all 20 mil­lion land records of 6.7 mil­lion land own­ers in 176 talukas of Kar­nataka have been com­put­er­ized. This sys­tem works with the soft­ware called "BHOOMI" de­signed fully in−house by Na­tional In­for­mat­ics Cen­ter, Ban­ga­lore. 2 In­dian Rail­ways´ RAIL­NET: The In­dian Rail­ways is Asia’s largest and the world’s sec­ond largest rail net­work. Adopt­ing E− gov­er­nance in right earnest and to reap the ben­e­fit of IT ex­plo­sion, In­dian Rail­ways have es­tab­lished a ’Cor­po­rate Wide In­for­ma­tion Sys­tem’ (CWIS) called RAIL­NET. It pro­vides smooth flow of in­for­ma­tion on de­mand for ad­min­is­tra­tive pur­poses, which would en­able tak­ing quicker and bet­ter de­ci­sions. Re­al­iz­ing the im­por­tant role that in­for­ma­tion plays in cus­tomer ser­vices and in rail­ways op­er­a­tions, IR has em­barked on its com­put­er­i­za­tion pro­gram. IR has devel­oped a ded­i­cated skele­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tion net­work, as a ba­sic re­quire­ment for train op­er­a­tions. Af­ter the early in­tro­duc­tion of ba­sic com­puter ap­pli­ca­tions e.g. pay rolls, in­ven­tory con­trol and op­er­at­ing statis­tics, rail­ways went for de­ploy­ment of com­put­ers for pro­duc­tiv­ity im­prove­ment through build­ing up op­er­a­tional data­bases. 3 Case of Gu­jarat check−posts: In Gu­jarat, a team of techno−savvy bu­reau­crats have fi­nally suc­ceeded in bring­ing cor­rup­tion un­der check and con­se­quently in­creas­ing state’s tax rev­enues through the ef­fec­tive us­age of com­put­ers and other elec­tronic de­vices at some 10 re­mote in­ter­state bor­der check− posts. Un­til now in Gu­jarat, in­spec­tion of 100% of com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles had been im­pos­si­ble with check−post in­spec­tors be­ing no­to­ri­ously cor­rupt. The drive to curb the num­ber of over­loaded ve­hi­cles has only proved to be in­ef­fec­tive. In or­der to max­i­mize their earn­ings from each ve­hi­cle, truck­ing com­pa­nies have prompted trans­porters to load their trucks be­yond per­mis­si­ble axle load thus cre­at­ing a se­ri­ous safety haz­ard. In Gu­jarat’s tra­di­tional check−post sys­tem, a sus­pect ve­hi­cle is flagged to a stop, and then weighed on a weigh­bridge lo­cated away from traf­fic. The le­gal penalty for over­load is Rs 2,000 per ton. 4 E−Su­vidha: This project was ac­com­plished to pro­vide ser­vices like − birth reg­is­tra­tion, death reg­is­tra­tion, mar­riage cer­tifi­cates, cat­e­gory cer­tifi­cates etc. This also pro­vides in­for­ma­tion about agri­cul­tural prices and re­lated mat­ters, and ed­u­ca­tional and em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties. 5 SARITA: A truly suc­cess­ful E−gov­er­nance ap­pli­ca­tion de­liv­er­ing trans­par­ent and ef­fi­cient ser­vice to the pub­lic in a most cost−ef­fec­tive man­ner (BOT ba­sis) − a true Pri­vate Pub­lic Par­tic­i­pa­tion. 6 E− Sewa is the first ma­jor ini­tia­tive in the coun­try to em­ploy in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy as a tool to im­prove ser­vices for ci­ti­zens. The Andhra Pradesh government launched the e−sewa pro­gramme to pro­vide in­te­grated ser­vices to ci­ti­zens of the state. The e−sewa cen­ter is a one stop−shop for more than 30 government−to−con­sumer (G2C) and busi­ness−to−con­sumer (B2C) ser­vices. From pay­ment of elec­tric­ity, water and tele­phone bills to the is­sue of birth and death cer­tifi­cates, per­mits and li­censes, reser­va­tion of bus tick­ets and re­ceipt of pass­port ap­pli­ca­tions, the e−sewa cen­ters of­fer a wide range of ser­vices un­der one roof. Most e−Gov­er­nance ef­forts have de­fined the cur­rent am­bi­tion as achiev­ing a Sim­ple, Mo­ral, Ac­count­able, Re­spon­sive and Trans­par­ent (SMART) Government.


In­dia is a great coun­try and we are proud to be In­di­ans. In­dia’s GDP(mea­sured on Pur­chas­ing

Power Par­ity) now ranked 4th in the world. The ever−in­creas­ing Tele−den­sity and In­ter­net pen­e­tra­tion is now em­pow­er­ing even the re­mote ci­ti­zens and cre­at­ing vo­cif­er­ous de­mand for in­for­ma­tion and ser­vices at their doorsteps. The speed of e−gov­er­nance roll out in the coun­try shall be de­ter­mined by the speed of the ICT pen­e­tra­tion in the ru­ral ar­eas. There­fore five things that our coun­try needs are as fol­lows:− 1 Strong po­lit­i­cal will. 2 At­ti­tu­di­nal Change− Self and to­wards ru­ral strength. 3 Ci­ti­zens em­pow­er­ment to de­mand bet­ter ser­vice and in­for­ma­tion. 4 Sin­cere im­ple­men­ta­tion of NeGP in the coun­try. 5 In­no­va­tion: Un­avail­abil­ity of power hin­ders the roll out of e−gov­er­nance in the un­reached area. E−gov­er­nance success and fail­ure de­pends on the size of gap that ex­ists be­tween ’cur­rent re­al­i­ties’ and ’de­sign of the E−gov­er­nance project’. Anal­y­sis of E−gov­er­nance projects in­di­cates that seven di­men­sions, In­for­ma­tion, Tech­nol­ogy, Pro­cesses, Ob­jec­tives and val­ues, Staffing and skills, Man­age­ment sys­tems and struc­tures and other re­sources, time and money, are nec­es­sary and suf­fi­cient to pro­vide an un­der­stand­ing of gap ly­ing be­tween re­al­ity and the de­sign.

When we talk of e−gov­er­nance projects in our large and di­verse coun­try of 121 crore peo­ple, we ba­si­cally talk of huge num­bers. There­fore any worth­while e−gov­er­nance project would in­volve large pop­u­la­tion. The ex­pe­ri­ence of e−gov­er­nance projects in our coun­try shows that: 15% projects are success. 35% projects are par­tial fail­ure 50% projects are to­tal fail­ures.


Thus from the above dis­cus­sion we con­clude that both a long term and a short−term strate­gies for E−Gov­er­nance im­ple­men­ta­tion are the need of the hour. For suc­cess­ful im­ple­men­ta­tion things like Stan­dards, In­fra­struc­ture, Leg­is­la­tions, Strat­egy all needs to be in place. It also re­quires es­tab­lish­ment of var­i­ous in­sti­tu­tions un­der the Min­istry of In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy. It re­quires a Global Vi­sion and lo­cal im­ple­men­ta­tion. And above all it re­quires e−readi­ness in the minds of ci­ti­zens and the Government em­ploy­ees.


1. Sau­gata, B., and Ma­sud,R, R.(2007. Im­ple­ment­ing E−Gov­er­nance Us­ing OECD Model(Mod­i­fied) and Gart­ner Model (Mod­i­fied) Upon Agri­cul­ture of Bangladesh. IEEE. 1−4244−1551−9/07.Ros­sel, Pierre, and Matthias Fin­ger. "Con­cep­tu­al­iz­ing e− Gov­er­nance." Man­age­ment (2007) : 399−407. 2. Gar­son, D.G. (2006). Pub­lic In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy and E−Gov­er­nance. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett 3. Richard H. 2001. Un­der­stand­ing e− Gov­er­nance for Devel­op­ment. Pa­per no. 11, i−Government Work­ing Pa­per Se­ries pub­lished by In­sti­tute for Devel­op­ment Pol­icy and Man­age­ment, Univer­sity of Manch­ester, U.K.

4. HT Cor­re­spon­dent, Hin­dus­tan Times, New Delhi

5. www.IBN­Live.com

6. http://www.cdac.in/html/about/success/egov1.asp

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