Mizoram : Implementing ICT for e-Governance
Posted by egovindia on July 16, 2006
|Mizoram : Implementing ICT for e-Governance|
|Parmeshwor Singh and Lalhmachhuani, NIC Mizoram|
|Perched on the high hills of north-eastern India, Mizoram is a storehouse of natural beauty with its picturesque landscape, hilly terrains, meandering streams, deep gorges as well as rich wealth of flora and fauna. Flanked by Bangladesh on the west and Myanmar on the east and south, Mizoram occupies an important strategic position having a long international boundary of 722 Kms. As per 2001 census, the total population of the state is 8,91,058, with a high literacy rate of 88.49 %. Agriculture is the main occupation and most people in Mizoram speak Mizo, the local language.
The State has been divided into eight Districts, 23 Rural Development Blocks, 24 Sub-Divisions and 3 Autonomous District Councils. Total number of villages as per 2001 census is 817 and there are 40 Assembly Constituencies.
Recognising IT as the fastest and the most advanced vehicle of change for all-round progress and development of the State, Mizoram advocates widespread proliferation of IT in the state and supports promotion of IT in the fields of e-Governance, empowerment of people, education, industry, health, rural development, agriculture, tourism and IT enabled services.
With a vision to ‘improve the quality of life of every citizen of Mizoram and transforming Mizoram into a knowledge based state’, the Government of Mizoram and NIC Mizoram are working together for an effective e-government in the state with a well defined action plan –
Strategy and Approach Plan
What have been done/achieved?
Ever since its inception in 1989, the continuous and tireless efforts of NIC Mizoram have resulted in spreading of IT culture in the state. NIC along with the Government of Mizoram has taken up many initiatives in facilitating and promoting e-government in various sectors such as Transport, Land Record, Public Health Engineering, Accounts and Treasuries, etc.
‘Sarathi’ and ‘Vahan’ provide a complete solution for the District Transport Office computerization including Registration, Licensing, Permit and Enforcement, Tax & Fee collection, etc. NIC Mizoram took up the challenge in the year 2004 and till now it has implemented the system in five DTOs at Aizwal, Lunglei, Champhai, Saiha and Kolasib.
Sh. Lalrinchhana, Hon’ble Transport Minister inaugurating online Vehicle Registration in Aizawl
Various training programmes have been organized by NIC, Mizoram on Vahan and Sarathi for the officials of the Transport Department to acquaint them with the different modules of the software. A website (http://transmizo.nic.in) has been designed and hosted, which gives detailed information about the transport department and provides necessary registration and tax details of the vehicle in an online mode.
A Vehicle Statistics Information Systems has been developed that helps in collection of various reports required annually by State Transport Authority, Government of Mizoram.
NIC is also planning to start the SMART card based Vahan and Sarathi implementation from the year 2006. This will not only provide impetus to the project but will also revolutionize the licensing and registration system of the transport sector in the state.
Community Information Centres
The CIC project was launched in the north-eastern region in the year 2000 with a vision to extend the benefits of global connectivity through Internet and to bring the region closer to the national mainstream by enabling more efficient and faster information flow amongst the people. CICs also help the State Government in implementing IT-based citizen-centric applications.
In Mizoram, 26 CICs have been established till now. All are equipped with Computers, VSAT, TV, web cameras, printers, UPS, etc. Two qualified operators manage these CICs, which provide the following services to the people in the far-flung and remote areas of the state –
CICs have evoked a great interest in the people, especially youngsters, as it is one of the main medium of communication and is being effectively used as:
Rural Postal Service – using e-mail as the mode of communication.
Labs – Computer Practical Classes are held for schools that lack such infrastructure.
Centre for Assembly and Lok Sabha Eelctions for transmission of data and providing support to the local authorities.
The AGMARKNET (Agricultural Marketing Information System Network) project utilizes ICT facilities for the betterment of the Agriculture Sector. It seeks to provide the farmers with prompt and reliable market information thereby improving their decision making capability and strengthening their bargaining power. NIC Mizoram has already provided training to a number of marketing personnel and state-level-officers on the AGMARKNET phase IV market software. Computer hardware and software has been provided to 10 Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs) of the state, which are now connected to the nationwide agriculture information network.
Management Information System for PHED
Web based MIS for PHED is one of the major IT initiatives of the Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India for effective planning, monitoring and implementation of various activities under Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Sector. The software design and development work has already been started at Mizoram and the SRS has been prepared using the latest UML tools. Mizoram has also decided to customize and implement the software that has been developed for Arunachal Pradesh. This will avoid duplication of efforts and will also save valuable time.
The project deliverables include Revenue Collection, Complaint Monitoring, Contractor and Supplier Information, Personnel and Payroll, Water Source and Asset Management, Water Quality Management, Material and Stores Management, Equipment Information System, Finance and Work Accounting, etc.
Seventh All India School Educational Survey
This was a joint project of NCERT, State Education Department and NIC. The project included collection of various information pertaining to schools – enrollment, amenities, teachers, etc. collected through six different forms from the block/village level and data-entry of these forms, processing, master-list creation, validation etc. The project at Mizoram has been completed and the data has been handed over to the national agencies for final report generation.
GPF Monitoring System
NIC Mizoram developed a GPF Monitoring System to benefit more than 36000 GPF subscribers of the State. The system implemented at Directorate of Accounts & Treasury, Aizawl has been developed with SQL Server at the back-end and Visual Basic as front-end. The software has features to generate various reports for the department such as broad sheets, annual ledger, annual GPF statement, and is used to maintain the up-to-date GPF accounts, which includes monthly subscription, advances, refunds, withdrawals, interest calculations and final payments.
Land Record Computerization
NIC Mizoram developed a data management and land allotment system for the State Government. The Unix based system is successfully running at the Land Revenue and Settlement Department and more than 2.21 lakh records of different districts have already been entered. The system allows data entry of land allotment and mutation. However, with the advancement of GIS technology the need has now been felt to digitize the existing cadastral maps and correlate them with the attribute data already available in the digital format.
The State Government, in consultation with NIC, is in process of implementing a new system where all the cadastral maps will be digitized and the RoR along with map will be issued to the farmers/land owner by means of information kiosks. The mutations will also be carried out from the digitized cadastral maps.This will usher in a new era of e-Governance in the state as more than 70% of the Mizo population is directly or indirectly connected with agriculture.
Support of NIC and CIC during elections
NIC Mizoram provides active support to the office of Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of the state. All the CICs, NIC District Centres and State Centre act as 24 hours State Control Room during the Legislative Assembly Election and the Lok Sabha Election. Some of the major activities carried out by NIC and CIC’s during election are:
Software Development – A randomisation software of polling stations and polling parties was developed by NIC Aizawl. The software incorporated all the checks necessary for fixing of election duties of polling parties. All districts extensively use this software at the time of elections.
Data Transmission – Collection and transmission of election related data to election server at Delhi is carried out on 24×7 basis from all the stations.
Electoral Roll Computerization – The entire voters list of Mizoram – assembly constituency wise has been put on web. People can log on to the website http://ceomizoram.nic.in and check if one has been correctly listed in electoral rolls or not. Web enabled online request for name inclusion is also possible through the website.
Robust hardware, software and network infrastructure is a must for extending IT enabled services to the government and the people. Over the years, NIC has already established the basic infrastructure and is continuously upgrading and augmenting it to roll out more citizen-centric applications.
Mizoram already has a state-of-art NIC State Center, 3 District Centers, 26 Community Information Centres, an e-Governance Centre at Aizawl and a State Secretariat LAN connected through RF extending their services to the people of Mizoram. A number of projects are in the pipeline to enhance these centers and equip them with the latest technology. Some of the ongoing infrastructure related projects are –
Video Conferencing: The plan envisages establishment of VC studios at nine locations, including all eight districts and the CM Office. VC equipment has already been installed and commissioned in all sites, and waiting for formal inauguration.
Sub Division Network: Site preparation is under progress at all the 27 selected sub divisions and autonomous district councils for the sub division network. Twenty-six sites have already been completed and the network will be commissioned soon which will provide a boost to the e-Governance initiatives of the state.
State Data Centre: A data centre consisting of Secured Network Infrastructure and Storage Area Network (SAN) is being set up in the Civil Secretariat by NIC. Under the State Data Center, it is envisaged to have a data repository at state level. The data center will have high-end Application, Database, Mail and Web servers.
Website is one of the easiest and simplest ways to ensure transparency in Government functioning. It is considered to be one of the first building blocks of an e-Governance application. A website of a department keeps the citizens informed and updated about the various activities and functions of those departments. NIC Mizoram has developed a number of websites, which are aesthetic in nature and rich in content. Some of the prominent websites are-
The websites of the districts of Aizawl, Saiha, Lawngtlai have also been designed and hosted on NIC’s webserver.
HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT
NIC Mizoram has a well-equipped training centre that conducts regular training courses on different topics for the officers and the staff of the state and central government organisations located in Mizoram. In-house training for NIC officials on the latest technology and tools is also a regular feature.
NIC Mizoram jointly organized and conducted ICT Awareness training for MLA’s and Ministers of Mizoram during 2nd February to 4th March 2005. Hon’ble Chief Minister of Mizoram, Sh. Zoramthanga distributed the Training certificates to all Ministers and MLAs who attended the training.
A five days training programme on ‘ICT tools for e-readiness in Government’ was conducted jointly by NIC and Science &
Hon’ble Chief Minister of Mizoram distributing certificates of IT Awareness Training
Technology Department, Mizoram during April, 2005. The training was attended by participants from the State Government, who showed keen interest in the e-Governance initiatives of NIC.
An IT awareness-training programme ‘IT in Journalism’ was specially designed for the local journalists of Mizoram. This was conducted recently in two batches and was well appreciated by the participants.
NIC Aizawl District Unit provided comprehensive IT support and data management during Intensive Integrated Revision of electoral rolls in 2005.
NIC Mizoram provided Internet connectivity to media personnel during the visit of Union Home Minister to Mizoram during January 2005.
NIC Mizoram provided comprehensive ICT support during the visit of His Excellency the President of India Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam to Mizoram last year.
SIO Mizoram receiving letter of appreciation from Dr. R Lalthangliana, Hon’ble Information Minister, Govt. of Mizoram