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eGovWatch: Government uses Facebook to help ration card holders voice their complaints

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Food Supplies and Consumer Affairs has become the first department of the Delhi government to open a Facebook account to address the grievances of consumers with Ration offices and Fair Price Shops, and it has received over 4,000 queries/complaints since its launch a month ago.

People can give suggestions, file complaints, upload photos and videos of any irregularity in Fair Price Shops and Ration offices on the department’s Facebook page last month.

“The purpose of the Facebook page is to provide an effective tool for two way communication between the department and lakhs of ration card holders and other people of Delhi,” said Secretary-cum-Commissioner Food Supplies and Consumer Affairs S S Yadav.

Yadav said that the department has provided information regarding the rates and entitlement of specified food articles supplied by the department under the Public Distribution System on the Facebook page.

It also provides information about the activities, new policies and initiatives of the department to the people.

“The department is encouraging people to post videos and photos on this Facebook page if they find any irregularity in any ration office or the fair price shop.

“Or if shop or office is not clean, if there is any misbehavior or if there is any demand of illegal gratification or any other complaint or deficiency that they wish to bring to the notice of the senior officers of the Department.

The Facebook page in a short span of one month has reached out to 52,000 people through the posts of the department and the fan following of the page is at 3,682 sofar, he said.

Yadav said that the department has constituted a “Social–Media” group headed by an Assistant Commissioner to monitor the complaints, comments and queries received and provide the information to the people promptly and resolve their grievances.

The department appealed to the people of the city to make maximum use of this page. The page is visited by the Commissioner and senior officers of the department several times a day and information and complaints posted on it reaches the concerned officer quickly.

“Photos and videos of ration shops and offices found closed or dirty, misbehaviour or deficiency in service or if someone demands any illegal gratification for making ration card or for providing any other service should be posted on this page and strict action will be taken against the people involved,” Yadav said.

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