Check identity of Sakaala applicants, depts told

Move to curb middlemen; bulk applications not to be accepted

To weed out the menace of middlemen who are trying to hamper the implementation of Sakaala services, the State government has issued directions to all the departments to check the identity of applicants before accepting applications.

Besides, directions have been issued not to accept applications submitted in bulk.

Addressing a press conference in Bangalore, Urban Development Minister Suresh Kumar said that during his recent visit to Bangalore North and South taluk offices, he was surprised to see the presence of scores of middlemen trying to bypass services offered under Sakaala. Besides, the notice boards with information on how to apply for Sakaala services had been deliberately defaced.

“We have directed all the departments that they check the identities of the applicants before receiving applications. Besides, applications from middlemen who try to apply on behalf of genuine applicants will not be accepted,” Kumar said. The Sakaala scheme provides guarantee of services to citizens within a stipulated time. As many as 265 services under various departments are being offered under the scheme.

‘Redeploy staff’

He said in cases where shortage of staff was delaying implementation of the scheme, section heads had been directed to handle the situation through redeployment of staff.

Till date, as many as 1.56 crore applications have been received under Sakaala, of which 1.53 crore have been disposed of. The disposal rate in December stood at 97.62 per cent compared to 97.35 in November.

The minister said the State government would provide Sakaala applicants access to online applications for all services under the scheme by March. A delegation of IAS officers from various states, in Bangalore on a training programme, called on senior Sakaala officials to understand its functioning.

The University of Chicago is carrying out a preliminary evaluation study on the implementation of Sakaala. A team will  visit some districts to get feedback from citizens.

Representatives of the University of California recently met the chief secretary to explore areas of cooperation in good governance, he said.

Any time services

Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar will launch, on Thursday, an e-governance initiative wherein a few select services offered by BangaloreOne, KarnatakaOne, Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation and Mysore Intelligent Transport can be accessed via the mobile phone. The service will be through the Interactive Voice Response and SMS, the minister said.

The ‘anywhere anytime services’ will be particularly helpful for people living in rural areas, Kumar said.

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