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Budget proceedings mysteriously disappear LA's official portal
E-governance balloon again bursts yet again
2/20/2018 11:43:42 PM
Early Times Report
JAMMU, Feb 20: Amid tall claims of e-governance and digitization, all the data related to the recently concluded budget session has gone mysteriously missing from the official website of the Jammu and Kashmir's legislative assembly.
As one surfs the website of Jammu and Kashmir Legislative assembly, http://jklegislativeassembly.nic.in, the replies given to the legislators by the government during more than a month long budget proceedings has been removed by the concerned officials that too without any reason. The links are broken and Error '404 - File or directory not found.'
As one clicks on the replies that were ought to be present in PDF format, it shows "the resource you are looking for might have been removed, had its name changed, or is temporarily unavailable."
By such an action, the authorities have not only mocked at government's own claim about ensuring the digital governance but also have denied the right to information to the people who surf this official website of the state's assembly. "If this is the condition of the website of the legislative assembly, you can very much imagine the system in vogue at other places. When the world has become digital, the Jammu and Kashmir is the only state perhaps which is poorly medieval," says an official working in one of the government's IT department.
As per the reports, the state government had taken a major initiative about 14 years back to implement e-governance in all the government departments, Public Sector Undertakings (PSU)s and other organisation under the centrally sponsored scheme. Most of the support is provided by National Informatics Centre (NIC), which is a premier institution of the Government of India, established in 1976. Respective departments have to maintain the infrastructure which includes the software content.
Pertinently, in era of Information Technology, the much-hyped e-governance in Jammu and Kashmir is proving to be a big failure. While the issue of data collection for proactive disclosure of information under the Right to Information Act-2009 is still a distant dream, the estates department website is completely defunct or carry wrong and outdated information.
Furthermore, there has been very little compliance with Section 4 of the legislation which makes it obligatory for a public authority [department falling under RTI Act] to "maintain all its records and indexed in a manner and form which facilitates the right to information." It also calls for ensuring that "all records that are appropriate to be computerized are, within a reasonable time and subject to availability of resources, computerized and connected through a network all over the state on different systems so that access to such records is facilitated."
What is more ironic is that the State Chief Information Commissioner in the year 2011 had formally informed the State Chief Secretary that there is not so encouraging response from Public Authorities with regard to implementation of Section 4 of the Act.
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