New Delhi: Babus in the city will no longer
be able to delay services to citizens as a long-pending
legislation seeking greater accountability in the public
services delivery will come into force from Thursday.
Seen as a major reform in service delivery mechanism
initiated by Delhi government, the legislation fixes financial
penalty in the range of Rs 10 to Rs 200 a day for failing to
respond to citizens` plea within the stipulated time-frame.
Although Delhi Assembly passed the `Delhi Right of Citizen
to Time Bound Delivery of Services Bill` in March this year,
its implementation comes close on the heels of Anna Hazare`s
anti-corruption movement and demand for a Citizens` Charter
for government departments.
City government officials claimed the provisions in the
Delhi legislation are more stringent compared to similar
legislations in states like Punjab and Madhya Pradesh.
Chief Secretary P K Tripathi said the government has made
all preparations to implement the law and even allocated funds
to the departments to pay the penalty to the citizens if
officials fail to deliver the services within the time frame.
Later, after following the set procedure, the penalty
amount would be collected from the concerned officials.
The government has also directed the departments to
prepare citizens` charter which will be put up in the
reception areas in the offices as well as in the websites.
Almost all the government departments including Revenue,
Food and Civil Supplies, Transport and Trade and Taxes as well
as civic agencies MCD and NDMC have been brought under the
Under the new system, a citizen will be able to get update
on his application online. Currently 32 services
have been included under the provision of the law.
The legislation says for issuance of ration cards, it
should not take more than 45 days while MCD and NDMC should
not take more than seven working days for issuance of
registration of birth and death certificates.
Similarly, driving licenses will have to be issued within
one day while an electricity connection will have to be
provided within 35 days.
Officials said legislation basically aims at sensitizing
the government servants towards the citizens and to enhance
and imbibe a culture to deliver services within a stipulated
As per the new law, any official, failing to deliver a
particular service, can appeal to higher authority to exempt
him from paying the financial penalty explaining the
difficulties in providing the service to an applicant.
"As the whole process for paying the penalty would take a
time, we have given the funds to the departments so that they
could pay the penalty amount to an applicant instantly in case
they fail to deliver the service within the stipulated time,"
said Tripathi, who has been personally monitoring preparations
of the departments to implement the law.
Later, after following the due process, if an official is
found lacking in providing the service, then the penalty
amount could be deducted from the salary of the official.