Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Delay bogs down B’lore One services

Delay bogs down B’lore One services
Deccan Herald

According to the director of Bangalore One, the delay is due to procedural formalities -a case of bureaucracy all over again?

It promised to deliver Bangaloreans from bureaucracy. It offered to make the boring work of bill payment a superfast job. But six months after the launch of Bangalore One, a ‘one-stop counter for all public services’, people are still in queue.

Not that the centre has not made progress — the 14 Bangalore One centres now have 13 services in their kitty — but the more ‘in-demand’ services are still in waiting. Services like issue and extract of Bangalore Mahanagara Palike’s katha certificates; RTO-related functions like renewal of learner’s licence, collection of road tax and payment of challan; Department of Labour’s issue of new registration certificates are lying pending.

Hollow promise?

Incidentally, the E-governance department had promised to launch all these services by June.

Director of Bangalore One Satyavathi said the delay in services is due to procedural formalities.

“We were waiting for approvals from respective departments. Approval from RTO has been granted and we will be introducing learner’s licence renewal and road tax collection in October.

However, payment against challan will not be offered,” she said.

Perhaps this counts as bad news for Bangalore Ones’ themselves. At the time of Bangalore One’s launch, it was promised that all other centres of utilities would be closed down within two km of any of the Bangalore One centres, to ensure more efficiency in their operations. But utility centres continue to operate, sometimes sharing the same premises.

According to Vijayan Aradhya of Jayanagar Bangalore One centre, where a Bangalore Mahanagara Palike counter is located in the same building, the centres are losing business because of the presence of the utility centre.

Losing out

“Though we are as competent as other agencies in service delivery, they prefer going to them as they are more used to it,” he said.

Satyavathi added that only Bescom has closed down its collection centres around Bangalore One Centres.

Holding out hope

“We have been pressurising the other agencies to co-operate but it is not working out. But the faith of our customers is growing, and with time and increased awareness, they will come to us on their own,” Satyavathi said.


* Bescom: Viewing and payment of electricity bills, statement of accounts.

* BWSSB: Viewing and payment of water bills, statement of accounts

* BMP: Payment of property tax, issue of birth certificate, issue of death certificate

* BSNL: Payment of telephone bills

* Bangalore Police: Collection of traffic fines and challans

* Regional Passport Office: Sale of passport applications

* Dept. of Labour: Renewal of shop and commercial establishments

* Stamps and Registration Department: Market value assistance

* Tata Indicomm/Reliance: Viewing and payment of bills


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