To be at par with developed countries, the Government of India had made out a plan to use Information Technology extensively in its operation to make more efficient and effective and also to bring transparency and accountability. The guide lines are given to state governments to prepare the vision and roadmap. Orissa state government has implemented some major projects and many others are in progress. The Government is in the process of building various infrastructure and capacity building of its manpower. At the same time Orissa Government is inviting various foreign and national investors to put up industries and utilize the available bounty of natural resources. Orissa is going to be one of the most progressive states in the field of industry and information communication technology in the near future. The trend is set and the future will speak about India and Orissa.
The State Government of Orissa is engaged in developing ICT (Information and Communication Technology) based projects using both wired and wireless networks throughout the state.
The state government has decided to establish a Satellite town over 300 acres of land to accommodate the increasing number of IT professionals. This was decided at a meeting of the IT task force presided over by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday (27-04-2007). The town, to come up between the Capital city and Khurda to have residential accommodation for over 10,000 IT professionals and engineers. Wipro and Aricent Technologies have evinced interest to open global training centers in the state. Wipro will set up its center over 100 acres of land between Puri and Konark which will create employment opportunities for 3,000 professionals.
e-Governance in Orissa:
As per the guide lines of NeGP (National e-Governance Plan) the state government had prepared its vision and drafted the IT policy 2004 which aims at establishing a robust and futuristic IT architecture. NeGP lays down State-wide e-Governance architecture which includes core policies, infrastructure and applications and also lays down the Institutional Framework by way of of a State e-Governace Council, State Information Technology Services Board, SeMT (State e-Governace Mission Team), PeMT (Project e-Governance Mission Team) and DISC (District Information Service Council). It will bring ease and convenience in transactions between Government and state citizens, increase employment opportunities for the educated youths and aim for higher economic growth in a definite time frame. The e-Governance roadmap of Orissa was released on 14th June, 2006 by Hon'ble Chief Minister. The road map covers e-Governance vision, e-Governance strategy and blueprint and capacity building plan. A number of critical core ICT projects have been implemented in the state to establish the basic technological infrastructure. Some MMPs (Mission Mode Projects) are identified in the state level and the responsibilities are bestowed to 15 government departments for smooth implementation within the targeted time frame to provide more than 200 services.
Implementation of e-Governance Projects:
There are many IT projects which are already implemented and producing good results. Two web based projects e-Shishu and Betan are discussed elaboratly. Glimpses of the successful projects are given below:
(a) TREASURY AUTOMATION: Various processes at district and special treasuries are handling payment of bills, payment of pension bills and receipt of challans. Other accounting activities are nearing completion. At the same time a parallel project on Human Resource Management System is operational for which the finance department has prepared the state level employee data base with all details to be used as a central database for the purpose of transfers, salary payment, retirements, pensions, promotions on seniority and preparation of various MIS reports. This covers the employee life cycle.
(b) ORISSA TELEMEDICINE APPLICATION NETWORK: A telemedicine network has been established (in collaboration with ISRO) to connect PGI, Lucknow with medical colleges at Cuttack, Berhampur and Burla through VSAT network to improve the healthcare system. Doctor consultation and conference, passing of patient information and viewing of critical operations are possible now.
(c) TRANSPARENCY and ACCOUNTABILITY PROGRAM: It has been initiated with the aim of enhancing transparency and accountability in implementation of all citizen centric schemes in nine departments across nine districts as pilot projects. Information related to utilization of funds, selection of beneficiaries etc. is being put into public domain.
(d) COMPUTERISATION OF COMMERCIAL TAX DEPT.: Automation of various processes of Commercial Tax, such as disposal of registration applications, providing information on tax collections, identification of defaulters, issue of statutory forms and VAT administration has been underway and nearing completion. All the border check gates of Orissa, district offices with Cuttack HO are connected for providing fast information and communication.
(e) ITIMS: In the Integrated Transport Information Management System project the computerized driving license issue (via Sarathi), issue of registration and permits for motor vehicles (via Vaahan), and collection of motor vehicle taxes (via Check Gate Computerisation) have been implemented at STA (State Transport Authority), major RTAs (Regional Transportation Authority) and check gates. This is being replicated at other transport offices.
(f) PANCHAYATI RAJ DEPARTMENT COMPUTERISATION: A few integrated systems are working effectively among the 30 DRDAs, 314 Block offices and 6234 Gram Panchayats of Orissa. PRIASOFT, web based application, is being used for monitoring the funds flow against various schemes taken up at block and gram panchayat level. RURALSOFT, another web based application is being used for monitoring the progress of projects and schemes under various poverty alleviation programs. PAMIS is being used for monitoring various accounts of Panchayati Raj departments.
(g) e-PROCUREMENT: This is being implemented in IT, RD, Works and Water Resources departments in first phase with support of NIC, New Delhi. The departments which are engaged in national and global tendering process will use this system. This web based application will increase transparency among the bidders.
(h) e-SHISHU PROJECT: Achieving universalisation of Elementary Education has been one of our cherish goals since the independence of India. Free and compulsory education has been made a fundamental right since 2002 and Government of India along with states has initiated SSA (Sarva Shikshya Abhiyan). OPEPA (Orissa Primary Education Program Authority) conceived the project e-Shishu to prepare correct and up to date database for schools, teachers and children which would not only act as Decision Support System and also be available to public for transparency and participation. Three projects CTS (Child Tracking System), SIS (School Information System), EPIS (Education Personal Information System) were planned by OPEPA and was executed in collaboration with OCAC and CSM. CTS was conducted by using ICR (Intelligent Character Recognition) technology after door-to-door house hold survey. The data of about 1.07 crore children of age group of 0-14 years have been captured. The SIS captured the infrastructure and location details of each school along with latitude and longitude. EPIS covered service details, pay details and personal details of each teacher and employee.
. It is sure that the state of Orissa will be in the lime light and will be a show case to many other states in our country.
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