- Published: 30 November -0001
"Out of the 215 nominations this year, one of the eight prestigious Public Service Awards is being given to India -- to the Bhagidari Cell, at the Office of the Chief Minister of the National Capital Territory of Delhi," UN information officer Oisika Chakrabarti told IANS. These awards will be presented on June 23 this year -- which is the United Nations Public Service Day.
The Bhagidari Cell runs out of the office of the Chief Minister of Delhi. It is meant to be a citizen-government partnership aimed at improving the delivery of services. Bhagidari Cell will be represented by Delhi government chief secretary S. Regunathan
Bhagidari's goal is to solve the problems of residents of Delhi. A web-based application has been developed to computerize every activity of the Bhagidari Cell. This, say officials, is used by all the offices of deputy commissioners.
Data of each citizen and representative of the departments is easily available through this software. This software offers the facility to enter and monitor the issues and solutions.
"Bhagidari, the citizen's partnership in governance is a means for facilitating citywide changes in Delhi. It utilises processes and principles of multi-stakeholders (citizen groups, NGOs, the Government) collaboration. It applies the method of 'Large Group Interactive Events'. Bhagidari aims to develop 'joint ownership' by the citizens and government of the change process. It facilitates people's participation in governance," say officials, about the project, details of which are online at http://delhigovt.nic.in/bhagi.asp.
The UN saw this initiative as an attempt at "bringing people into government decision-making". United Nations said: "The challenge has been a lack of people's participation in formulating or evaluating government policies, which often result in administrative processes working in isolation and having little impact on citizens' lives."
So, in 2000, the Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi decided to involve all stakeholders to transform Delhi into a "world-class capital city". Bhagidari, a citizen-government partnership with an innovative approach to governance was initiated.
Through the Bhagidari Cell, networks of local groups such as resident welfare associations, market and trade associations, industrial associations and non-governmental organizations have "emerged as new, collective decision-making actors," said the UN, while announcing the prize.
"Delhi's initiative has grown from 20 citizen groups in 2000 to more than 1,600 citizen groups representing about 3 million people today. These networks discuss problems hampering effective delivery of civic services with government representatives and then produce joint workable solutions to improve their environment and quality of life," says Chakrabarti.
As a result, the judges for the competition felt, mutually accepted schemes pertaining to civic needs like water supply, sanitation, school system, power supply, urban transport, protection of then environment and people's security have been developed and implemented, leading to vast improvements in public service that benefit all citizens.
Contest entries came from governments who believe they have solutions on three fronts -- improving transparency, accountability and responsiveness in the public service; improving the delivery of services; and application of information and communication technology (ICT) in Governments through e-Government.
Winners include Canada's Vancouver Agreement to revitalised the paralysed but once-thriving downtown Eastside of that city; Mexico's attempt to take water to millions of homes; and Morocoo's initiative for decentralization and expansion of the quality monitoring process of fruits and vegetables for export.
Also on the winner's list was Spain's initiative for public employment service in the Castile and Leon regions; Canada's giant consumer affairs gateway that links information from over 450 government and non-government organisations partners; and Mexico's digital-governance strategy to modernise government. Singapore's winner was its attempts to make the process of opening new businesses simpler, inexpensive and less time-consuming through an online application system.
Quelle: Newindpress, 19.06.2005