The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) is making all possible use of information technology for improving delivery of civic services by launching open data portal, multiple mobile apps as well as redesigning its website. However, its initiative of monthly e-newsletter started during the smart city contest has come to a halt for the past four months.
The first monthly e-newsletter was released in May 2015 while the last came out exactly a year later in May 2016. “There is no need of an e-newsletter now as the PMC is very much active on the social networking sites. There is a good response on the social networking sites of PMC where people get all updates of civic information and can also communicate with the civic body,” said Municipal Commissioner Kunal Kumar.
He said the e-newsletter was a pre-condition during the smart city contest but there was no need of it now that the civic body uploaded all information on its social networking sites.
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PMC had formed an editorial team for the purpose but the team is learnt to be not interested in continuing it.
“It was the responsibility of an editorial team to bring out the monthly e-newsletter, but it was not happening. The team members were hardly contributing to it. This led to its discontinuation,” said a civic official.
“We already are burdened with routine civic responsibility and it was difficult to spare time for the e-newsletter. The responsibility of the e-newsletter should be with an expert,” he said.
As per smart city guidelines issued by the union government for selection of potential smart cities, e-newsletter was one of the scoring criteria, with the highest score of 5 being assigned to it out of a total of 100.
Incidentally, the PMC was ranked second in the smart city contest after Bhubaneshwar.
The first anniversary of launch of the Smart City Mission was also held in the city with Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching various smart city projects for selected potential cities.
In the first e-newsletter, the municipal commissioner had said, “Times are changing and so are the paradigms of governance. New public management is the buzzword and what it essentially entails are the three Ps namely Partnership, Participation and Proactive sharing.”
He further said, “It is vital for the PMC to create mechanisms of confidence building, of gaining the trust of the people. A constant two-way dialogue is an important tool which can help in this direction and in this brackground the first edition of PMC E-newsletter has been published.”
Kumar had said that the PMC was planning to build a robust presence for the civic body in the social media to meet similar objectives.
Back then, Mayor Dattatraya Dhankwade had congratulated the civic administration for the newsletter. “Through the e-newsletter, PMC would endeavour to keep the city abreast with all the important decisions and events which happen in the day-to-day functioning of the civic body,” he had said.