October 5, 2013
e-Governance in West Bengal – a move to make lives better
Delivering public services in the electronic format has made governance in West Bengal more effective, transparent and faster; the initiative to give a boost to e-governance was made a priority after Ms Mamata Banerjee took over the charge of governing West Bengal. Taking over as the Chief Minister of the State, she rightly addresses the issue of adopting of e-Governance in reaching out to all citizens and delivering services to their doorsteps.
In this journey, Government of West Bengal is trying to roll out all government services through e-Governance service and match international standards in terms of service delivery quality. West Bengal Govt. has implemented a number of remarkable e-Governance projects to establish fast, flawless and real time connection across all the villages, Cities, Blocks, and District head quarters. In West Bengal, most of the projects are those that mostly serve common citizen`s demand.
The main aims of the West Bengal e-Governance project are –
>> To Deliver government services to anyone, anytime, anywhere.
>> To Provide government services in the form of electronic medium.
>> To Transform the traditional government to good government by making it accessible, transparent, effective, responsive and accountable.
The e-Governance services is classified into four categories as –
1. G to C – Government to Citizen Administration Includes: Inter-government enterprise, Control, monitor and distribution
2. G to B – Government to Business Tenders (e-tenders) Includes: Contract Management, Tax
3. G to G- Inter/Intra Govt. Employees Includes: Registration/Land/Revenue Services, Hospital Services, Agricultural services
4. G to E – Government to Employee Ensures: Policy Enforcement, Standards, Accountability
e-Governance Projects in West Bengal and Deliverable Services with Progress
Computerization of land records (Land & Land Reforms) –
>> Electronic transformation of Land Registration Information into Central Server.
>> Computerize digitization of Cadastral maps.
>> The Block head quarters are dispensing computerized record of rights to the land owners.
>> Land Acquisition Information System has been recently developed to ensure speedy disposal of land acquisition cases.
>> Various reports relating to notification, declarations, land schedule, estimate preparation etc. speedily and efficiently.
Progress : The land records and cadastral maps have been computerized for all the 341 Blocks and 42309 mouzas of the state. To create a transparent and speedy disposal of Land Acquisition Cases in the state of West Bengal, the application software `BHU-ADHIGRAHAN` has been designed and developed by NIC, West Bengal State Centre which minimizes the hectic manual tasks and supports to execute relevant queries and generates a large number of MIS reports. The application reuses the existing BL&LRO legacy data that saves a considerable amount of time to feed the case data.
>> An Optical Fiber Network that connects Kolkata to 19 Districts to provides connectivity of Data, Voice & Video Communication.
Progress: Network is established for 19 districts through 341 Blocks, 62 subs divisional Headquarters, 3354 Gram Panchayats and 125 Municipalities.
Provide Central Data Repository of the State, Secure Data Storage, Disaster Recovery, Remote Management and Service Integration.
Progress : West Bengal Govt. Set up four storied building with floor area of 5000 sq ft, in the Webel Campus Salt Lake, Kolkata.
Geographical Information System (GIS)for Municipalities –
>> Provides municipal governments with extraordinary quantitative and qualitative benefits for revolutionizing the government processes work.
>> A comprehensive municipal GIS should provide a common platform for data collection, storage, authorized and secure access to spatial data.
>> Municipal GIS will largely address the needs of various local government departments.
Progress : Geographical Information System (GIS) has been implemented in 10 Municipalities in the State. The spatial data survey and implementation of GIS for Pujali, Kurseong, Budge Budge, Kalimpong and Bidhan Nagar Municipalities have already been complete.
E- District –
>> IT enabling of internal processes of District Administration and its subordinate offices to increase functional efficiency
>> Automation of workflow and internal processes of District Administration.
>> Seamless integration of various departments for providing services to the citizens by integrating various District databases. Providing efficient individual department services through delivery channels like Common Service Centers (CSCs).
>> To provide easy access to government services to common people, especially the people belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and women.
>> Creation of IT infrastructure for rolling out e-Governance plan right up to Block levels.
>> Develop capacities of human resources of Government to operate & maintain IT enabled systems and applications with confidence and provide services to the people effectively and efficiently.
Progress : West Bengal e-District Application is a comprehensive and web enabled service portal that acts as an electronic gateway into the Government's portfolio of services. It is an end-to-end integrated solution which caters to the needs of various departments of West Bengal state and provides various e-Governance services to its citizens. It provides an interface for citizens to avail various citizen centric services like applying for licences, pensions etc. through its front-end (e-District Application), and couples it with a back office to handle the processing of all these applications.
Panchayats & Rural Development :
>> The Department has developed `Integrated Fund Monitoring & Accounting System` (IFMAS) and rolling it out in the Zilla Parishads & Panchayat Samitis.
>> The Department has developed Gram Panchayat Management System (GPMS) and GIS based decentralized Information System and rolling out in the PRIs. GPMS has been introduced in 45 GPs.
>> Integrated Panchyat Planning and Management System (IPPMS) is a pilot project to computerize 20 Panchayat Samitis for Integrated Fund Monitoring and Accounting System softwares.
>> The DIT,GOI recommends in the National e-Governance Plan to set up the Common Service Centres (CSCs) in the premises of the Panchayat Samities and the Gram Panchayats.
>> `Grasso`, the Gramin Sanchar Society, an NGO, has been selected by the Dept of Panchayat & Rural Development to share their valuable field level experience in establishing the citizen centric Information Centres.
Progress : The Panchayats & Rural Development Department's providing Portal  for G2G and G2C services including web based reporting mechanism. Integrated Panchyat Planning and Management System (IPPMS) have been implemented in Burdwan district, 50 GPs for GPMS softwares and 35 GPs in 4 Blocks for GIS based Decentralized Information Management Initiatives. The P & RD Dept has selected 8 GPs in 4 districts (Hooghly, Jalpaiguri, Burdwan and Bankura) to start the pilot project of CSC.
Public interfaces through Infokiosks/websites
>> An Interactive kiosk is a computer terminal that provides information access via electronic methods. Most kiosks provide unattended access to web applications.
>> It can provide services in different kind of filed like Tele Kiosk, Financial services kiosk, Photo kiosk, Internet kiosk, Ticketing kiosk, Giving or Donation kiosk, Movie ticket kiosk, DVD Vending kiosk, Visitor management and security kiosk, Building directory and way finding kiosk
Progress : The official website of the West Bengal Govt. which provides detailed information on the Government initiatives and various other details to the citizens. Webel has also facilitated a number of websites of different government departments and public interface through Information Kiosks.
Education Department :
>> Schools are being brought under the ambit of the scheme with training being provided to teachers to utilize ICTs in teaching learning process.
>> An integrated “Higher Education Service System” is one concept that can empower the governing bodies to administer the progress of the education plan in the whole country and serve various stakeholders in a much better manner.
Progress: Database is now developed for the Higher Education department which can be accessed through their website and kiosk with Touch Screen and IVR which is of immense help to students seeking admission in various streams in colleges.
Tourism Department :
>> A website and Touch Screen Information kiosks for the Tourism Department have been developed which provides detailed information of tourist interest that is of great help to both the domestic as well as international visitors.
Progress : Webel has also implemented a web-based application for WBTDC for easy reservation of Tourist Lodges and various tourist services.
Kolkata Police :
>> The Kolkata Police has an efficient intranet involving the police head quarters, important offices and all the police stations within Kolkata Police.
>> This has brought marked efficient in the day to day operation of the police and police investigation.
>> A more ambitious project is under implementation to connect all the 407 police stations of the state and important police establishments in the network.
Progress : Webel Technologies is given responsibilities to computerize 45 Police Stations of Kolkata Police and 5 Divisional Offices and 30 other offices of Battalion with the aim to increase efficiency of their existing operations in the Thana offices & Battalion, more effective Crime Control, close liaison with Lalbazar Higher officials.
Computerization of Kolkata High Court :
>> NIC state centre has been actively involved in providing ICT support to the High Court of Kolkata.
>> The software has been upgraded to state of the art web based application using Oracle 10g RDBMS under a campus wide LAN set up connecting all the sections, offices and Court rooms.
Progress: Few important modules of this software are Case Management Information System (CMIS), Generation of Cause List, Caveat Information System, and Judicial Service Information System, Judgments/Orders Information System, Exchange of Information among High Courts and Supreme Court.
>> The Health Department is enabling the patients in the rural areas to interact with Consultants through the electronic route
>> IIT, Kharagpur has developed technical solution for telemedicine connectivity utilizing wide area network, leased lines, ISDN lines & including ordinary copper wire. ISRO provides the VSAT support
>> Doctors in Rural Hospitals can consult the Specialist of Medical Colleges through video conferencing facility and Internet.
>> Quick & Secure movement of Diagnostics Report between Doctors
>> Maintain central repository of case studies of Critically & Rarely infected Patients for future Doctor Reference.
Progress : Rural hospitals are linked with the medical colleges like NRS, Medical College and Burdwan Medical College. The telemedicine roll out now covers five referral centers, which have been electronically connected to 15 nodal centers for facilitating exchange of voice data and images. So far thousands of patients have been treated through telemedicine route.
Smart Card :
>> A small electronic card, resembling a credit card in size and shape, contains an embedded microprocessor
>> Holds its own data / information with possibility of easy reading/ writing information any number of times
>> Employee Attendance in Govt. Offices in West Bengal through Smart Card
>> Smart Card Based Driving License & Registering Certificate improves Transport facilities more convenient and efficient
>> Complete Check on duplicity & Forgery
Progress : The West Bengal Govt. is rolling out Transport Smart Cards. The Transport Smart Card, with 4KB microprocessor and using biometric security system, stores details of the driver and the vehicle. These cards have been designed for readability anywhere in the country and thus help in transport management and crime tracking.