In a significant initiative, the Urban Development ministry has announced ‘e-publishing’ of Government of India’s ‘gazette notifications’, putting an end to the practice of endless wait for important documents. The shift to e-publishing came at the behest of Minister of Urban Development M Venkaiah Naidu, with effect from first of this month, an official statement released in New Delhi said.
Gazette notification is an important legal requirement to validate, authenticate and to make effective various kinds of laws, acts, rules, orders and other government decisions. All user groups had to wait for a few months for copies of such notifications as physical printing of the same was a time taking exercise.
The ministries and government departments used to submit their gazette publication requirements to the government printing presses where the work of type setting, printing and publishing is undertaken. Hard copies were then made available for sale for usage by all government and private users, the statement added.
Seeking to end such delays, the Urban Development ministry has now directed the Department of Publication to stop the physical printing and switch over to e-publishing of all gazette notifications on its official website www.egazette.nic.in within five days of receipt of the same from ministries and departments.
According to PTI, the records for the gazette will be maintained by the department for all future references. User groups and citizens can download and print all gazette notifications free of charge, the statement said.
Under the provisions of the Information Technology Act, 2000, downloaded and printed gazette copies are sufficient for all official and legal purposes, it said. E-publishing assumes importance since many gazette notifications pertain to projects of national interest, including matters related to land acquisition.
Quick availability of the same enables early start for further processes, the statement said. It also does away with the need for printing several pages of such notifications every year leading to a saving of publication cost of Rs 40 cr per year being incurred on 90 tonnes of paper. The move will save power, chemicals, color, dyes etc and is also a major environment-friendly initiative, the statement added.
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