SMS to be accepted soon by govt deptarments as official document
People may soon be able to use SMS communication with government departments as a documentary proof while utilising citizen-services for making payments, registrations and various other schemes.
The Centre on Monday launched a platform with about 241 applications for the public after completing pilot project of mobile governance with about 100 departments and testing proof of concepts.
The applications relate to services covering areas such as Right to Information (RTI), health, Aadhaar, education, directory services and so on.
Launching the 'Mobile Seva' service, department of electronics and IT secretary J Satyanarayana said: "Like Railways, we have to bring in a system wherein by showing (transaction) SMS or, whatever be the case (like e-mail), the proof on mobile is accepted as valid document.
"To increase our reach we need to bring this kind of practice in mobile and e-governance."
India has around 90 crore mobile phone subscribers. Satyanarayana said that at present digitally signed certificates are accepted as valid document but similar rule has to be made for mobile phone users where SMS or a communication available on mobile phone can be accepted as valid proof.
Joint secretary at DEITY Rajendra Kumar said the department is ready with digital signature for mobile phones which the government can use in messages that are to be sent to the citizens applying for a service.
"We will start allocating digital signature (Public Key Infrastructure) to all government department on board in first quarter of 2014. Government departments can send communication on mobile of citizen seeking service," Kumar said.
He said any communication with PKI, say SMS, can be shown instead of a paper receipt or document.
At present, most of the mobile applications work on Android mobile phones and Java enabled phones.
Kumar said that in six months the government will bring all applications to HTML5 standard which will make them compatible with all mobile platforms.
DEITY additional secretary Rajiv Gauba said about 830 departments from the Centre, state and local authorities have come on board, and the department is working on the third phase to further scale up the mobile governance platform and bring more services under its ambit.
"We have to go through inter-ministerial consultations to scale this m-governance store for launch of third phase. The third phase will have many more departments and capacity to add more services application on this store. Final shape of third phase can be known only after consultation process is complete," he said.
Source:-The Times of India
Cabinet proposal soon to constitute 7th Pay Commission
The central government is likely to constitute the 7th Pay Commission for revising the salaries of its over 50 lakh employees before the start of process of next general elections due in May, 2014.
“The Finance Ministry is working out a Cabinet proposal for constitution of the 7th Pay Commission which could be taken up for consideration in the next couple of weeks,” a source said.
According to information available, the government’s intention to constitute 7th Pay Commission before going for polls is clear as it has made provision of Rs. 3.5 crore in the second supplementary demands for grants in this regard which was approved by Parliament in the just concluded Winter Session.
Earlier in September this year, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram had announced that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has approved setting up of the 7th Pay Commission.
According to the announcement, the Commission will be mandated to submit its report in two years time and its recommendations would be implemented from January 1, 2016.
However, after that announcement, no formal proposal was put up before the Union Cabinet for constitution of the Commission.
As per the practice, the Commission is headed by a former Supreme Court Judge and its other members would include experts and officials.
Meanwhile, the government is also believed to have approved fixing minimum pension of Rs 1,000 per month under the Employees’ Pension Scheme 1995 (EPS-95) run by retirement fund body Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO).
The government is also understood to have cleared maximum basic wage ceiling of Rs. 15,000 per month for deduction of Provident Fund from existing Rs. 6,500 per month for private sector workers, in general, covered under schemes run by EPFO.
Source : http://www.thehind