Odisha Assembly To Go Paperless For Better Efficiency, Cost Reduction

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Bhubaneswar: To make the proceedings and processes of the State Assembly more efficient while reducing cost, the Odisha government has decided to make the House paperless.

Talking to mediapersons here on Friday, Speaker of the Odisha Assembly, Surya Narayan Patro said at present, two e-Assemblies are functioning at Shimla in Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh in Punjab where all diverse House business is digitised. “The Odisha government has taken an in-principle decision to digitise the State Assembly,” he added.

Stating that a team of senior officials of Odisha had recently gone to Shimla to study the functioning of the e-Assembly, Patro said he had a meeting with these officials on Thursday and asked them to prepare a preliminary report. Once the Chief Secretary and Speaker approve the report, a detailed project report will be prepared and sent to the Centre. After examining the report, it will determine the sharing of funds for the implementation of the e-Assembly. “The state government is also ready to share the funds,” he pointed out.

The Ministry of Paramilitary Affairs has been working on an ambitious project called National E-Vidhan (NeVa) to enable all the state legislatures and the two houses of Parliament to go completely paperless.

NeVa is a Mission Mode Project (MMP) included in the Digital India Programme. The Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs (MoPA) is the nodal ministry for its implementation in all the 31 states/ Union Territories with Legislatures. The total project cost is over Rs 738 crore and funding pattern of this scheme is 90:10 for North East and the hilly states, 100% for Union Territories and 60:40 for the remaining states. The funding for e-Vidhan is provided by MoPA and technical support by Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). To promote the rolling out of NeVA, the MoPA has consulted all the state governments.

A tripartite memorandum of understanding will be signed among MoPA, Government of India and state governments for the implementation of e-Vidhan MMP for achieving paperless State Legislatures and electronic information services delivery to legislators and other stakeholders.

Himachal Pradesh is the first state in the country to have a hi-tech Legislative Assembly.


Salient features of an e-Assembly

—Streamline and automate end-to-end bill life cycle from introduction, reading, committee reports, amendments, online voting to approval.

—Monitor constituency funds, track expenses, communicate with other members and beneficiaries and maintain records.

—Real-time and online status updates of all Assembly queries directed to the concerned departments.

—Form, track expiry and manage renewals of committees. Schedule meetings, draft minutes of meeting, allocate responsibilities and provide online status updates for meetings held.

—Ensure timely response to citizens’ requests and adhere to Right to Information (RTI) regulations.

—Empower MLAs and members to access information anytime-anywhere from the online library.

—Automate administration and allow electronic management and tracking of correspondence.

—Automated workflow and use of mobile, tablets etc. helps Assemblies achieve a paperless administration and reduce overhead costs.

—Electronic voting and real-time status updates on bills, grants, minutes of meetings etc. fosters increased collaboration and ensures better accountability.

Benefits of e-Assembly

—Integrate with various social media channels and contextually engage citizens, receive citizens’ feedback on new initiatives, social and economic policies through their social posts and analyse these posts to handle queries and offer services as per citizens’ needs.

—Online-centralised library enables MLAs to access information any time and from anywhere. With access to the Right to Information at the right time, it facilitates better decision making.

—Generates extensive reports for multiple processes through the dashboard, analyses reports for complete visibility across processes and ensures better process efficiency.

—Automated workflows and use of mobile, tablets etc. helps Assemblies achieve paperless administration and reduce overhead costs.

—Electronic voting and real-time status updates on bills, grants, minutes of meetings etc. fosters increased collaboration and ensures better accountability.

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