Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is likely to announce the comeback of his government’s anti-corruption helpline on March 25, sources told Newsline on Sunday. Earlier this month, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia had announced that the government will re-launch the helpline with enhanced back-end support.
Sisodia said that the AAP government will take lessons from its earlier experience with the helpline that had choked after thousands of calls poured in on the first day of its launch. “We still have a few things to learn about expertise and governance. The helpline will be back with enhanced back-end support,” the deputy chief minister had said.
The government has also undertaken a training programme for a number of officials who will handle the helpline. “The officials will be trained to channel the calls they receive to the right government department, to segregate frivolous calls from the genuine ones and to trace a call through its complaint number,” a source said.
“There is no doubt that there will be a flood of complaints once the helpline becomes operational. But the challenge is not only to ensure that it does not crash, but to make sure that it can be sustained. The reason it is taking this long is because the government is taking steps to make a foolproof mechanism that is sustainable over a long period of time. The technical training that the officials will be imparted with will be about coping with the rush of calls,” the source said.
“The helpline will essentially function as a call centre. Our role will be to filter calls that come in. We have to be able to identify calls that come with substantial proof of corruption from those that don’t. Since the helpline has not started yet, it is hard to say how many officials will be required to tackle the calls. Officials are being trained in batches and depending on the number of calls received, the strength of the helpline staff may or may not be increased,” an official undergoing training said.
On March 3, Sisodia had said that the government will announce the return of the helpline after Kejriwal returned from Bangalore.