People cheer as Bihar goes online with public services

Patna : As the Right to Public Services (RTPS) Act in Bihar went online from Thursday, enabling people to file applications for caste, income and domicile certificates over internet, people across the state — particularly students — welcomed the move.

Kunal Singh, a student in his early 20s, said : “I will no longer have to stand in a long queue to submit an application form to obtain a certificate from a government office.”

“The online facility will be an advantage to all sections of people, particularly students, who won’t have to waste time running around for it.”

Deepak Kumar, principal secretary, general administration department, said now people can file online applications for obtaining caste, income and domicile certificates and later more services will be made online.

Deepak Kumar said it will also provide an opportunity to file applications from the place and time of their choice. “Even people living in rural areas can use internet to file applications,” he said.

According to him, in view of a heavy rush for obtaining certificates under the RTPS, the government has decided to put these three services online.

The RTPS Act became effective in the state Aug 15 this year and since then nearly 5.5 million people have applied for certificates.

“Out of the 5.5 million applications received after the RTPS Act came into force, more than four million applications were filed for caste, income and domicile certificates alone,” Deepak Kumar said.

After releasing the report card of the first year of his second term, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar last week said, “My government had implemented the act to ensure timely and transparent delivery of public services. In the first phase, time limits prescribed for 50 public services.”

Earlier, Nitish said he had warned government officials who do not perform the common man’s jobs within a stipulated timeframe will face a fine of up to Rs.5,000.

The chief minister said if a government official failed to deliver a service within a given timeframe, he or she will be held personally responsible and the government will impose a fine for the delay.

He said after the act was implemented, people will no longer have to run around government offices to get their work done.

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