|HOME | INFOTECH | HEADLINES|
|August 27, 1997||
Andhra CM wows bureaucracy brassM S Shanker in Hyderabad
It's no flattering for Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu that he has, in fact, succeeded in flooring senior officials at a gathering organised in the state secretariat with his hi-tech computer presentations last week.
"It's a wonderful and pioneering effort," said Union Cabinet Secretary T S R Subramaniam who witnessed the impressive presentation and a video-conference by the chief minister with two district collectors of Vijayawada and Visakhapatanam.
He did not stop there. "It's the right direction that the state government in taking information technology to the doorstep of the common man and improving the quality of governance."
Naidu's ambitious plan to streamline the state administration and make functioning of the secretariat (the seat of power), totally transparent by using information technology finally took off the other day.
Says he: "Public access to government services is uncoordinated, cumbersome and paper based, which is further compounded in the case where more than one agency is involved. Service delivery by the government can be contrasted for example with ATM services abroad, which provide 24-hour service of high quality using IT.
Similarly, tracking a file in a government department can be an exasperating experience, while companies like the Federal Express, using IT, can pinpoint the location of a package anywhere in the world, despite handling over two million packages a day.
It's true that mystification of procedures and an atmosphere of obscurity given immense discretion and consequently power, to the bureaucracy. But existing organisation structures, hierarchies and procedures in government are designed for a different era.
IT, together with, greater transparency, flatten organisation structures, and simpler procedures could help tackle some of the maladies of government resulting in speedier and better decisions.
Andhra Pradesh government intends to take steps to improve the quality of government-citizen interface, by introducing a process of administrative reforms integrated with use of IT.
Argues Naidu that "By merely introducing IT without concomitant changes in organisational structures, administrative culture cannot exploit the full potential of IT."
INFOTECH | TRAVEL | LIFE/STYLE | FREEDOM | FEEDBACK