Gujarat is 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, 100 percent roll out, and none of them shut down, MediaNama has learned via a Right To Information request filed with the Department of Information Technology. Trailing behind Gujarat were Uttar Pradesh with 9032 centers, albeit with only around half of the planned CSCs operational, and Madhya Pradesh with 8850, again with 95.86% rollout completed.

Common Service Centers, which are part of the government’s National e-governance plan allow citizens in rural areas to access e-governance services and more, including access and submit information such as birth certificate, Internet access, e-Learning, electricity bill collection, BSNL bill collection, mobile top ups, railway reservation, LIC premium collection, e-Commerce, etc. They are also acting as banking correspondents.

CSC Shut Downs

As of February 2011, 90,018 of 126043 planned CSCs had been started, and 4537 had been closed down. What is shocking is that all of the Common Service Centers rolled out in Haryana had been shut down – 1159 of them. According to the CSC website, contracts of SARK Systems Jaipuria Group, Comat Technologies, 3i Infotech Limited, in the state, were terminated.

The highest number of shut downs were from Tamil Nadu with 1976 CSCs closing shop, followed by Uttaranchal with 77.59% of its CSCs discontinuing operations, and Tamil Nadu at 50%.

We’re planning to file a follow-on RTI request for information on transactions at Common Service Centers, so if you have any suggestions or data requirements related to CSCs, do contact us at nikhil at medianama dot com.

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