So are you ready to be a part of the government? No, no one is offering you a job in GoI, but you can do your bit towards moving the country in the right direction thanks to a new initiative of the Narendra Modi government.
Mygov.nic.in is almost a digital extension of the government that almost everyone, at least those who understand the Internet, can be part of. Anyone can register through and easy process and tell the government what you are good at, what you want to contribute towards and which government initiatives you want to be part of. The process is really simple and you can be online and helping in under five minutes.
Your homepage will show discussions in the groups that you have selected. I selected ‘Digital India’ and was faced witht the question: “With mobile and e-banking becoming common in urban India, how can we take similar services to rural India using similar technologies?” The question had been up for just a few minutes and there were already over half a dozen responses. There is absolutely no junk here, unlike social media platforms of the similar kind. It seems no one wants to mess with the government, at least not when you have already volunteered your phone number and address.
And it is not just about opening up your mind and coming up with ideas. Those logging in are also assigned tasks. For instance, tasks given to the Clean Ganga group include “Give a detailed field report on the scope for further development in Gangotri”, “Suggest 10 actionable policy measures towards the cleaning of the Ganga” etc. All with deadlines, which seem to be around seven days at the moment.
The site is well designed and easy to navigate. For instance, on every page you can see which are the other groups where discussions are going on like Clean Ganga, Girl Child Education, Green India, Job Creation, NRIs for India’s Growth, Skill Development and Swachh Bharat (Clean India). You have the option of joining these groups to see the conversation and being part of the same.
The site and the posts are also very high on social quotient as all questions are shareable. The site even lets you add a video or photo as a suggestion, which is impressive and could be a good tool for those who are not that articulate with words.
If the first few posts are any indication, there are some really good ideas forthcoming. Arun Subramanian, who seems to be among the more prolific users of the site, has a suggestion on how to bridge the digital divide. “Government organizations MUST be encouraged to get greater exposure to technology. Files that are the nervous system of administrative work should be digitized. Workflow enabled solutions like SAP’s FLM (File Lifecycle Management) must be the default work style across the nation. The PMO must encourage a nation wide adoption of digitization and technology adoption with innovative and beautiful solutions that are secure and technically robust as well,” he says in a post.The site is already full of ideas like this which are easy to implement, especially for a government that has such a decisive mandate.
There is no doubt that the government is high on crowd sourcing and tapping the power of the social media, which lets it engage with the masses like never before. We just hope that the government start implementing, or at least working on, some of the good ideas that are coming up through this route.