GoK to accept Open Debate on Bangalore One Project sign now

Calling for an open debate on BANGALORE ONE PROJECT

Bangalore one Project - A reverse gear e-governance

Bangalore One is a subject matter of grave concern for the citizens of the entire country other than AP. Bangalore one has potential ramifications for the rest of the country.

It is the AP's ill conceived e-seva project that had given rise to Bangalore One. After Bangalore one, we may hear Delhi (Delhi-One), Chennai (Chennai One!), Mumbai One and so on. Everywhere it is going to be the same corporate bodies which are going to bag the tenders. The citizen who has been paying the utility bill in these cities without much problem now may not see any difference in his/her lifestyle except the air-conditioned payment counters.

We have explained very clearly that neither e-seva nor Bangalore one has any e-governance content to GoK.

It is very important that Bangalore One has to be discussed/debated in full, giving opportunity to the citizens, citizen forums, techies like you and me and so on.

Let us call for an open debate on Bangalore One. Let us invite the entire media to watch its proceedings. We are all willing to take part in such a debate.

We have already explained our stand in the first mail itself to GoK. In the debate we will add one more angle, the failure of Bhongir e-governance experiment in AP due to the revenue model envisaged there.


Will the proponents of Bangalore One agree?

Let us invite the Karnataka officials (my esteemed colleagues), NISG and even the contractors who have bagged the contract to represent one side. And let us invite the citizen groups, Civil Society Partners (NGOs), women groups including SHGs and e-gov enthusiasts to nominate themselves to represent the other side.

After such a debate, if Bangalore One is still considered a real e-governance initiative let us go ahead and implement it.

If, in the debate, Bangalore One is found to be a bogus e-governance, then the Karnataka government has to take it back and attempt something truly e-governance.

This is a real test. If Bangalore one has at least some e-governance contents, the proponents of Bangalore One would take up this debate.

Analysis of the Bangalore one.

The pluses and minuses of Bangalore one

1. It has no governance or e-governance content. It has no software for handling the back office operations of the government offices. It does not have even a single service which can be called e-governance. Payment of utility bills does not come under governance at all. This may come under the definition of (part of) e-commerce. It is a different matter that Governments have no business to involve themselves in e-commerce. It is an exclusive domain of the private corporate.

2. It has nothing for the business community, save for the consortium which had been identified for the implementation of the project.

3. It is not process automation based.

4. It does not have any plan for the Government offices. It has plans only for the window dressing (kiosks).

5. It does not have anything for the poor who constitute over 50\% of Kannadigas.

6. It has nothing for the rural areas, which constitute 75-80\% of Karnataka.

7. It has nothing for women or SC/STs. (The rural e-seva project which has been under implementation in West Godawari district of Andhra Pradesh has given primacy to women self help groups for the kiosk operations. Though the West Godawari project had not automated the back office operations, it had resulted in massive empowerment of the rural women. For this achievement, Sanjay Jaju and his team deserve all credits. West Godawari had gradually started building the back office automation as well, according to the latest reports. Why Karnataka chose to ignore this women empowerment issue?).

8. Bangalore one or any other similar project has the retarding effect of stalling true e-governance projects. This had already happened in AP. The e-seva project had resulted in stalling of all other efforts to bring in true e-governance. AP has nothing to quote as genuine e-governance effort except the registration department automation which was commenced before the commencement of e-seva. The private vendors would allow anything which has something for them. After tasting success in one project such as the e-seva, they look for only the revenue models and not something which is beneficial to the citizens / common man. The revenue model means revenue to them. May be it is a shared revenue.

9. According to the e-mail admission from NISG, the NISG which manages the Bangalore one nonsense has no plans for rural areas. (http://www.sugame.com/umashankar).

All discussions that are happenning on Bangalore One Project and the status of e-Governance in Karnataka State are on www.ekavi.org discussion forum. Please visit. http://ekavi.1.forumer.com/index.php?showforum=32

What is e-governance? And why Bangalore one is not e-governance?
Author: C.Umashankar IAS., http://www.sugame.com/umashankar

Bangalore one Project - A reverse gear e-governance

Under e-governance scenario, the Government and its citizens/business
houses should be able to transact all their activities or at least majority of activities without meeting each other using Information technology tools such as internet, public kiosks etc.

For example, when a citizen wants to get a ration card, he/she should be able to apply and get the ration card without physically going to the Taluka office. Similarly, when a widow wants to get a widow pension she should be able to get it by applying through the village or block level internet centre.

Or, a farmer wanting to get a land extract / cultivation extract should be able to do it without going to any government official through the internet or public kiosks.

Going to the Government offices and waiting there to get these services should be only an optional one. The citizens should have a choice of going to the internet centres or the government offices to get their works done with the Government.

This can be achieved only through the following steps:

1. Government offices should be computerised using online workflow procedure. That means all the paper based registers have to be given up and all government works have to be carried out only through computers.

2. All Government employees working in the areas where e-governance is
proposed have to be computer trained and each one should be given user ID and password to operate the system.

3. All these government employees have to be trained in their area of operation in the software.

4. The Government servers should be connected to the internet so that the citizens and business houses are enabled to access the Government information at any time and also enabled to file all their requests / applications online. The scope for meeting government officials should be reduced to the extent that only where statutorily such physical presence is required they should be asked to meet the government officials.

5. All applications or requests from citizens/business houses should be received only through online procedure using internet as medium.

6. STD booths or similar public kiosks should be authorised to intermediate between the citizens and the government. This includes online remittance facility too.

A similar facility should be made available to the business houses too.

Why Bangalore One cannot be considered e-governance?

None of the above 6 parameters mentioned above are proposed to be built in Bangalore One.

Bangalore one does not offer any e-governance service. It is a mechanism to do collection of various remittances such as BSNL telephone bill, electricity bill, water taxes, property taxes etc. No citizen can file his/her application for any government services online. Bill collection and e-governance are two different areas.

Bangalore one does not intend to bring computers to government offices. Nor does it want to bring in online automation in government offices.

Bangalore one does not look at Government servants to get involved in the project. It relies only on private partners to do bill collection.

Bangalore one does not have any scope to provide service to the poor people.

Bangalore one does not have scope to provide service to the rural/urban women self help groups.

Bangalore one has nothing for the farmers and people living in rural areas.

Bangalore one does not aim at reducing corruption in Government offices.

Bangalore one does not envisage empowering the citizens, women or socially oppressed classes such as dalits.

A typical e-governance project should free the citizens from the corrupt government officials and make them feel free and empowered.

Bangalore one does not have any scope for reducing corruption or empowering women, rural citizens, dalits, farmers and SHGs.

The user charges payable to the private company will be on permanent basis. The Government neither owns the bill collection software nor will it ever own it. It is a fraud on the people of Karnataka.

Bangalore one is intended to benefit only the private partners and possibly for the officials who have master minded it. There is a distinct possibility that the officials involved in Bangalore one might have agreed to promote it for a percentage of commission from the Bangalore One revenue. For this commission they seem to claim that Bangalore one is an e-governance project whereas it is not an e-governance project.

Bangalore one is a fraud that is being imposed on the people of Karnataka.

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  • 13 December 201378. Chandru Butler
    bingalre 1
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    All these non-sense schemes which do not benefit the majority of people in Karnataka should be stopped.

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Celina JonesBy:
Petition target:
Government of Karnataka State, INDIA


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