The Gujarat State elections are now just a week away. We take a look at the Bhartiya Janta Party’s election manifesto, specifically on the promises made by the ruling party in the state, related to E-Governance and IT. Last year, Chief Minister, Narendra Modi had shed some light on how the state has been using information technology for e-governance, at the International Conference on E-governance.
Here are some highlights of the BJPs manifesto:
- A statewide WiFi network will be set up: WiFi facilities will be made available at public places and commercial centers: It’s not clear if the party has promised a state-wide Wifi network for access throughout the state or access at just major public places and commercial centers. Also there’s no mention of whether this would be free-to-use WiFi, or paid.
- Social Media driven greater consultative policy formulation : The BJP promises that it will involve citizens in policy formulation through social media.
- One Day Governance centers will be expanded: Eight citizen services are made available to citizens across the counter in one hour, provided they submit all documents, through one day governance centers by the Gujarat government. These include provisioning of income certificates, caste certificate, minority certificate, domicile certificate, and other citizen services. It’s available in 125 towns, 200 talukas and all 25 districts of Gujarat, according to a write-up by The Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister.
- Through e-governance we will ensure public services to citizens at the nearest possible point – Note that when we last checked via RTI, we found that Gujarat was the leading state when it comes to rolling out new Common Service Centers, with as many as 13,695 CSCs being set-up as on February 2011, a 100 percent roll out, and none of them shut down.
- It also promises that distance learning & teaching and telemedicine will to be spread across the state.
- A new portal for job placements: for facilitating the youth of the state in finding right jobs.
- The Party has also promised further use of satellite technology for management of natural resources.
Note: We did look up the Congress Manifesto, but didn’t notice anything related to digital in the English version.