Right to Public Services -PPT

Transparency, Accountability &
Timeliness in Right to Public
An Overview of 5
-Tina Mathur
February 2012
Why Service Guarantees - Broad
• Changes in Political Thought & Agenda –
What [also] gets Votes
▫ Good Governance
▫ Development – Provision of Basic Essential
▫ Open, Transparent Government
▫ Anti-corruption Measures
▫ Acceptance by State of Civil Society
movements for rights
Why Service Guarantees- Specific
• Failure of Citizen Charters
• Precedence of Rights-based Laws : RTI,
• Increasing Bad Publicity on Grievances
related to poor Public Service Delivery
• Top-down Push for systems that holds frontline service providers accountable
• Simultaneously empowering citizens
RTPS Acts: Highlights
• Transparency
• Accountability
• Timeliness
RTPS Acts: Highlights
• Transparency- making public service
delivery processes & procedures open
and visible
• Transparency – Information to citizens
▫ Reasons [in writing] why an application
is rejected or a service delayed or
▫ Status of Applications
RTPS Acts: Highlights
• Accountability - by identifying the
responsible authorities within the system
• Accountability - Penalizing wilful nonperformance
• Accountability - Put Citizen First:
mechanism for redress of grievance;
RTPS Acts: Highlights
• Timeliness - Imposes a legally
enforceable timeframe for service
• Timeliness: Imposes legally enforceable
timeframe for addressing grievances
through the mechanisms of Appeals and
Comparative Overview
• Sample: 5 States
• Methodology
▫ Review of Documents
▫ Limited field visits
▫ A Quick Review of Major
Comparative Overview
• Madhya Pradesh- PIONEER- first to pass and
implement Act
• Bihar- RTPS NO. 1 on its ‘SUSHASAN’ Good
Governance Agenda
• Rajasthan- maximum number of services
• Delhi- An entirely different approach – e-SLA
• Uttar Pradesh- quick to follow MP, but least
number of services under Act
Key Highlights
TRANSPARENCY -Public Awareness
• Awareness drives through
▫ Special Gram Sabhas in MP;
▫ TV, Radio, Print media in Bihar,
▫ Nukkad Nataks, Village Pracharaks, Schools in
• Notice Boards in all States
• Clear instructions for citizens on application
process and services coming under RTPS
• Bihar BRTPS Rules (sec.18) and Rajasthan
Rules (20) specifically mention
Dissemination and Training
• Online application tracking and monitoring systems
in MP, Bihar, Delhi, UP; final stages of software
readiness in Rajasthan
• Jigyasa and Samadhan helpline in Bihar for queries
related to RTPS
• e-SLA monitoring and tracking system in Delhi
[compensatory cost for delay is calculated through eSLA software]
• SMS based reminder system in MP for officials
regarding pending services; application status
through SMS in Bihar
Accountability – Fixing Responsibility
• Designated Authorities/Competent Officer,
Appellate Authorities, Reviewing Authority
identified in all 5 States
• Penalties have been notified in case of failure to
comply by time stipulations; compensation fixed
in MP, UP, Rajasthan and Delhi
• Delhi - Incentives for Good Performance- upto
5000 rupees for no default in 1 year; disciplinary
action for 25 defaults in a year
Accountability – Monitoring
• Monitoring and tracking at the level of applications –
▫ Offices to maintain Register of applications accepted or
rejected AND services delivered, delayed or denied
▫ Software-driven such as Adhikar, e-District and e-SLA
• Monitoring also done through
▫ nodal officials,
▫ inspections,
▫ monthly meetings at which disposal, pendency of
applications & appeals is done
▫ Video conferences
Timeliness – Regular Systems
• In all five states, Notified Services have to unambiguously
state the TIME LIMIT within which services will be
• In all states [except Uttar Pradesh] acknowledgement slips
show the Date on or before which the service would be
• Delhi : an automatically generated Time Limit through the
e-SLA system; Bihar: through Adhikar
• Single window systems in Revenue Department – all 5
• MP and Rajasthan - in addition - 1-day Governance
Timeliness – Some Field Observations
• Most services – reported to have been delivered before
time: especially, mutation, caste/income/residence
• MP, Bihar, UP, Rajasthan and Delhi have used IT for
process efficiency.
▫ Online application system introduced in MP, Bihar, Delhi &
▫ In Rajasthan for certain services (caste, domicile and birth)
certificates issued online with digital signature
• In MP and UP: where connectivity or capacity a problem,
applications accepted, verified on paper and entries made
into computer later to save time
Timeliness- Issues
• Too much time has been stipulated for
services in the RTPS Acts
▫ Citizens: Earlier the process was faster.
▫ Governments: A safety mechanism since
penalties are involved; does provide
flexibility to set better standards locally
• Delays: Very few appeals so far- MP,
Bihar and Rajasthan have reported a few
Overarching Challenges
• Overall implementation mechanisms robust
rules framed
process simplification on-going
citizen awareness campaigns on-going
capacity building on-going
• Shortages of Staff in Front-line Institutions: seems to be
nearly universal
▫ In urban: due to high demand for services
▫ In rural – vacancies not filled for years
▫ Staffing situation needs re-assessment
• Shortage of funds has been reported: extra costs
incurred for computer stationery; electricity supply, etc.
Overarching Challenges
• Service Delivery staff need further capacity building
▫ Mindset change
• Infrastructure: Frontline institutions require more
space and better working conditions
• Service guarantee to reach the illiterate, people
living in remote areas: How to enable?
• Important that citizens understand what is
guaranteed: NOT acceptance of Application alone!
▫ in some cases even where citizens were not eligible,
perception was that the service was still guaranteed
Overarching Challenges
• A competitive spirit amongst states for
increasing number of services under RTPS Acts
▫ Good when notification of more services is wellthought out
▫ Danger in playing number games
Overall Picture So Far
• States-led: Ownership Very High
• State Specific Strategies the Norm
▫ Notified Services – local demand-pull; supply-push
▫ Multi-modal Delivery: Paper and Electronic
▫ Choice: Punishment or Mutual Understanding
[Delhi-developing culture for timely service
delivery; encouraging departments to join E-SLA]
▫ Modes of Monitoring
▫ Procedures for Appeals/Complaints
• Self-generated Competitive Spirit amongst states
Overall Picture So Far
• An enabling law for citizens rights that has
received largely positive feedback from all,
including government staff
• Pressure of service delivery on the
designated officials as more people applying
for services after learning about the
• Change in citizen perceptions: no longer
need the services of middlemen or bribe to
get services
Thank You

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