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Thursday, August 05, 2021

A year since Delhi HC order, construction workers’ board finally starts process to launch dedicated portal

Delhi High Court had asked the board to ‘seriously examine’ the launch of a dedicated portal on July 2 last year. Subsequently, it had served several reminders over the course of hearing.

Written by Sourav Roy Barman | New Delhi |
July 15, 2021 3:11:26 pm
On Monday, the board opened three special camps for the correction of bank details of construction workers who could not be given the one-time assistance of Rs 5,000 due to the absence of bank details during the registration. (Express file photo by Praveen)

More than a year after the Delhi High Court directed the Delhi Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board (DBOCWW) to launch its own website, the board informed the court that the Covid-19 pandemic had stalled the process, which will now be expedited.

In an affidavit to the high court, which started monitoring the activities of the board following a PIL filed by social activist Sunil Kumar Aledia, the board said it is “actively considering” to launch a dedicated portal after many of its special drives to register workers ran into technical glitches in the past, holding up the process of disbursal of benefits.

The HC had asked the board to “seriously examine” the launch of a dedicated portal on July 2 last year. Subsequently, it had served several reminders over the course of hearing. The board has now requested the IT department to provide technical support for transferring the online service facilities from the e-district platform, which is a common public interface used by several Delhi government departments, to the proposed website.

“The DBOCWW Board is actively considering setting up its own web portal and server independent of e-district portal. However, the process was delayed due to the pandemic in Delhi when offices were shut for majority of the time due to lockdowns and some of the officers were also diverted towards Covid-19 duty. Some others either came down with Covid-19 themselves or were in quarantine since their family members had contracted Covid-19,” it submitted.

In a meeting with Aledia and secretary of National Campaign Committee for Construction Labourers (NCCCL) Subhash Bhatnagar on July 8, the board officials said that within two to three months, most of the work for the website and the server along with digitization of old records/manual registration cards for all workers shall be finalised and executed.

The creation of a dedicated portal is necessary, the court had pointed out, as registration drives launched from time to time run into hurdles as workers queuing up at special camps are turned away as the e-district portal crashes due to its inability to handle extra load.

On Monday, the board opened three special camps for the correction of bank details of construction workers who could not be given the one-time assistance of Rs 5,000 due to the absence of bank details during the registration. The camps are being held at labour welfare centres at Ashok Vihar, Jhilmil Colony and Pushp Vihar.

The board runs a number of welfare schemes funded by the cess collected from building projects under the Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Cess Act, 1996.

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