Mumbai: For time-bound delivery of services to citizens, the Maharashtra Government has drafted a legislation, under which its officials could face a penalty of up to Rs 5,000 if they fail to provide services to citizens within a designated time.
The draft of the 'Right to Services Act' prepared by the state government's General Administration department (GAD), says that officials of zilla parishads, panchayat samitis and gram panchayats, municipal councils, municipal corporations, nagar panchayats, planning authorities, industrial townships will come under the purview of this Act.
"Once the Act comes into existence, it would cost government employees dearly if licences, ration cards, birth- death certificates, caste validation certificates, etc are not given to citizens within a stipulated time," a GAD official said.
It said the specified time will start from the date when the required application for a service is submitted to the designated officer or to a person subordinate to him authorised to receive the application.
The application will have to be duly acknowledged to the applicant in writing or through electronic means or SMS, specifying date, time, place, unique complaint number, particulars of receiver of complaint along with stipulated disposal time frame.
"Every designated officer or his subordinate public servant who fails to deliver the citizen related services to a citizen within the stipulated time shall be liable to pay compensatory cost," the draft states.
Two separate appellate authorities will be appointed
to hear the grievances of the citizens and lodge complaints.
"If the first appellate officer is of the opinion that the designated officer has failed to provide service without sufficient and reasonable cause, then he shall impose a lump sum penalty, which shall not be less than Rs 500 and not more than Rs 5,000," it states.
The second appellate authority, if it is satisfied that the designated officer or the first appellate officer has failed to discharge the duties assigned to him under this Act without sufficient and reasonable cause, may recommend disciplinary action against him under the service rules applicable to him.
The draft also mentions that no civil court shall have jurisdiction in respect of any matter that the appellate authority is empowered by or under the Act to determine.