By SHANMUGHA SUNDARAM J
CHENNAI: The Department of Rural Development and Panchayat Raj has been creating a database of Grama Sabha meetings using the ‘Namma Grama Sabha’ app to support the government in policy making in the future.
The Department, with the help of TN e-Governance, has been collecting data from all 12,525 panchayats that would be used as an effective tool to rectify shortcomings in village panchayats in the State and replicate the best practices to improve the services to the people in rural areas. Apart from this, the app helps officials in the State and district headquarters to monitor happenings of the Grama Sabha meetings, which would be held six times in a year. “We will get live-feed from the grama sabha meetings from across the State and manage to collect details regarding the meetings and the resolutions adopted within an hour. It will turn into an effective tool in framing policies to deliver the government schemes and redress the issues aired by the people at the earliest, ” said a senior official in the Department.
The app was launched on October 2 this year. Authorities have also collected details within a couple of hours from all panchayats. Hitherto, it would take at least three days to gather the information. “Now, it is paperless work. We also have block, district and state level dashboards based on the information collected through the App to keep track of the developments, ” the official added.
‘App will help maintain transparency using tech’
Panchayat secretary and the nodal officer of the respective panchayat would use the app in uploading the data - photographs of the participants (group pictures), resolutions passed during the Grama Sabha meetings and number of participants. “This will also help the department in maintaining transparency and keeping pace with the technology for better administration,” he added.
However, it has technical snag, due to which officials are finding it difficult to upload the data from remote villages and hilly regions. “Efforts have been taken to develop features such as offline mode in the app. It will enable panchayat secretaries to save and upload the data once they reach a place with network connection,” added the official.
“It is a good initiative. It would empower the public and aid vibrant local bodies, if the government enabled the public to access the data,” Nandhakumar Siva, general secretary of Thannatchi, a civil society organisation.