COVID-19 catalysed digital adoption across India, transforming government service delivery: Dr Neeta Verma of MEITY
The past two years have accelerated the digital revolution across the world, and the Indian government is working overtime to keep up and transform governance.
At TechSparks 2021, YourStory’s flagship startup-tech conference, Dr Neeta Verma, Director General, National Informatics Centre, MEITY, shed light on the role that technology is playing in the functioning of the governance.
Speaking at the ‘State and Future of Governance Track’, Dr Neeta shared that NIC has developed a suite of products and a range of platforms to support common government functions.
“To address the communication requirements of the government, we have .gov email services, which are being used by over 29 lakh government employees all over India,” she said.
NIC also operates and hosts a video conferencing platform, and she underlined that this has been “the lifeline of government functioning” during the pandemic.
Digitising government processes
Files of are of utmost importance in the governance process and to address this, the NIC has built an e-office product to digitise paperwork and faciliate movement between offices and locations. This is currently being used by over 600 government entities across the nation and is helping the move towards paperless offices.
To facilitate all processes, from recruiting to retirement, a single platform called the eHRM is being used by the central government. eAuctions and eProcurement are also in place to help with other key functions.
“Public engagement is another important aspect of governance. The popular myGov platform built by NIC is being used for policymaking, crowdsourcing, and getting ideas in a big way,” Dr Neeta said.
A national-level public grievance addressal platform called Centralised Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGrams) is also in use to connect all government entities and ensure resolution of issues.
COVID-19: catalyst for digital adoption
Dr Neeta believes that the development of technological infrastructure and the evolving ecosystem will influence service delivery significantly. She stressed that mobile, cloud, data, and AI/ML will drive this growth further.
COVID has also been a key catalyst for change in this space as it has brought digital to the fore. “We have all witnessed the way digital technologies have been adopted across urban and rural India,” Dr Neeta said.
From children moving to online education to employees working remotely, the acceptance of the digital way of life has expanded. This has also helped push citizens towards availing services digitally and also provided the government with the opportunity to enhance the user experience and make it “more intuitive and convenient”.
Driven by the motto “One nation, one platform,” the NIC aims to integrate and digitise more governance functions to streamline processes and make the end-to-end process more efficient overall for citizens.
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