Bengaluru: Prime Minister Modi may have swept to power with his social media blitzkrieg and promised to propel India into the Digital Age, but it’s Karnataka’s Congress Chief Minister Siddaramaiah who is showing signs of becoming upwardly mobile.errr.in governance, with a new initiative that takes a leaf out of the playbook of e-commerce companies that quickly realized that the Indian consumer is miles ahead of businesses and governments when it comes to using technology.
Called Karnataka Mobile One, the new initiative, to be launched on December 8 by President Pranab Mukherjee, will bring 632 government-to-citizen services and over 3,500 business-to-consumer services into one app on your smartphone. You can ask for information, apply for documents, pay utility bills, most importantly and one expects that this will be the most utilized feature, nag the government by complaining about uncleared garbage, unlit streets, and the like. And oh! You can also get advance information about water supply or power cut schedules.
Siddaramaiah, with help from an IT department in overdrive, seems bent on stealing Prime Minister Modi’s thunder, sending out a ‘voice invitation’ to the press, proudly announcing, “Dear citizens, this is your Chief Minister Siddaramaiah speaking. I am delighted to announce the launch of Karnataka Mobile One citizen service. This is a first of its kind service which will be available at Your fingertips. Just call 161 to avail the service.”
Karnataka has had many e-governance firsts, starting with Project Bhoomi for digital land records. The previous BJP government launched the Sakala citizen services initiative. But, “This is better than Sakala, under which you can get information about the status of your application. With Mobile One, you will get advance information about services”, an official in the CMO said, “If you are enrolled into the service, you will be intimated about water and power cut schedules so that you can plan ahead. This will be a citizen-friendly initiative”.