Public services now go online in Bihar

PATNA: Continuing his tradition of presenting annual report card listing the achievements and targets of his government, which he started in 2006, CM Nitish Kumar released the sixth report card – first of his second tenure – on Friday, highlighting his agenda of development with justice.

“Development with justice is the mantra of our government. We have to build a Bihar where development goes hand in hand with justice. We want to see the glow of self-esteem, self-confidence and self-sufficiency on the faces of 10.4 crore Biharis,” said Nitish at the release function.

“By 2015, Bihar should take its place among the best states of the country and play an important role in strengthening the nation,” he stated.

Maintaining that the report card has fixed agenda for good governance for the next four years, Nitish expressed satisfaction over the implementation of the Right to Public Services Act (RTPS Act) which has benefited lakhs of people within four months. In a bid to provide still better service, he announced that people seeking caste, income and residential certificates would no longer be required to visit government offices and can apply online from December 1.

“The government offices have so far received about 50 lakh applications. Of them, 32 lakh were for caste, income and residential certificates. So it has been decided to provide online facility to people seeking these certificates,” Nitish said.

“Now the people, who were earlier forced to give bribe for different certificates, are getting them within the stipulated time without greasing the palms of officials,” the CM said.

The government is laying stress on the development of human resources and focusing on education, healthcare and sanitation. In health sector, Nitish said, the infant mortality rate had come down to 52 out of every 1,000 births in 2009-10, maternal mortality rate had reduced to 261 per one lakh deliveries and fertility rate to 3.9, which he said was still not satisfactory. In the last 14 months, no new case of polio has been reported and “we are in the last stage of making Bihar polio-free”.

Nitish hoped that 15% green coverage would be achieved very soon and announced a scheme to encourage private nursery for producing quality plants. For the protection of planted saplings, he announced another scheme to give ‘patta’ to the local poor people, who would get right over the trees produce.

In another move, the government has decided that construction, purchase and procurement by government departments and corporations worth up to Rs10 lakh will be posted on the website with the details of the agency hired for the work. This is being done for transparency in the works, he said.

On the resounding mandate the NDA got in the last assembly elections, Nitish had a sense of pride while saying, “The people showed their ability to rise above the narrow confines of caste, creed and community to stand together as Biharis. Their resounding support has increased our responsibilities further and made the task even more challenging. Our endeavour will be to continue to turn these challenges into opportunities.”


Source: Faizan Ahmad for The Times of India