NIC has consolidated its learning and built powerful digital products in the last 3-4 years: Neeta Verma, DG, NIC
Neeta Verma says that the RT-PCR app is helping the government aggregate all results of all Covid-19 tests happenings across the country on a common dashboard. It has immensely helped in formulating policies and tracking the Covid-19 cases across the country
Neeta Verma, Director General, National Informatics Centre (NIC) has highlighted the key role of the NIC in aiding the Centre, various states and district administrations in handling unprecedented challenges thrown by the global pandemic.
She stated that Covid posed unprecedented challenges to the governments across the country and each one of them has had different sets of challenges but the use of digital technologies kept the governments up and running. She said that the pace of digitisation has been accelerated during Covid times and the NIC’s video conferencing services have now become a default choice for online meetings for the government departments. Verma also spoke about how the Supreme Court itself had convened hearing of lakhs of cases online by using the NIC VC services which helped in delivering justice to the citizens.
Verma, who participated as a Keynote Speaker at the virtually held Digital Technology Sabha 2021 recently, underscored the role of e-office platform used by different governments which allowed officials to work during lockdown periods in a safe and secure manner. This also helped in building green offices, reducing the need of paper, real estate and cut down movement of government files, she said.
“The RT-PCR (Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction) app is helping the government aggregate all results of all Covid-19 tests happenings across the country on a common dashboard. It immensely helped in formulating policies and tracking the Covid-19 cases across the country,” pointed out Verma.
She spoke about the Digital India Program launched in 2015 which digitally empowered people and created a digitally inclusive India. Since then, digital technologies have been embraced by all sectors including public, private and social sectors. Verma said that the country has also witnessed mobile and broadband revolution along with the proliferation of mobile apps to cater to almost every need of the people. She added that the evolution of a vibrant startup ecosystem is another important event that happened during recent times and India as a country is proud to have a number of unicorns at present.
She asserted that the government’s pace of digitisation has also increased under the Digital India program and under the leadership of Union Minister of IT & Electronics RS Prasad. “Today the national level programs of the government are born digital and technologies are being used right from the concept to the implementation of these programmes. We have seen a lot more services have come online, payments have become digital, papers/documents are being submitted digitally which has reduced the need of visiting the government offices. The Direct Benefit Transfer is another important milestone through which we have been to transfer subsidy directly to the bank account of the beneficiary which has led to high order of efficiency, timely payments, fraud elimination at various levels,” Verma said.
NIC DG mentioned that the NIC has been truly honoured to be partnering with the Centre and states with their digital initiatives and it has built robust IT infrastructure for the exclusive use of the government which spans across multi Gigabyte network, messaging service, data centre, cloud, VCs among others. “With 800 offices across India, NIC has been able to enable districts and state governments to leverage the ICT infrastructure. We have built a wide variety of digital solutions to cater to the IT demands of the governments and the citizens,” Verma informed.
She said that in the last three-four years NIC has consolidated its learning and built powerful digital products including an e-office which has helped many government departments go completely paperless, making all government files, receipts absolutely paperless which ultimately became a necessity during Covid-19 times. “It gained a lot of traction and today it is being used by over 600 different district, state and central level departments and ministries across India. E-hospital is an end-to-end hospital management system which is compliant with the new National Digital Health Mission,” she said.
NIC has also developed ServicePlus which helps government departments, especially states, quickly launch their services online without writing a single line of code. With thousands of services already online, there are a wide variety of templates for almost every kind of service like birth certificate, caste, domicile and income certificate, she remarked.