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Whistleblower Magsaysay winner disappointed with political interference in AIIMS

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New Delhi: Whistle-blower bureaucrat Sanjiv Chaturvedi, who won the Ramon Magsaysay award, on Wednesday said he was highly disappointed with the political interference in the administrative work of the country’s premier health institution, AIIMS, and the PMO’s response to it.

Chaturvedi told IANS in an interview that political interference has increased under the Narendra Modi government.

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www.news.civilserviceindia.com

“During the past 3-4 years, a lot of unwanted activities have happened at AIIMS. I am deeply disappointed with the prime minister’s Office. Honest bureaucrats are not allowed to work independently as there is a lot of interference by the political class in administrative work,” Chaturvedi, who got to know about the Ramon Magsaysay award given to him on Wednesday morning, told IANS at his official residence.

The 40-year-old, 2002 batch, Indian Forest Service officer of Haryana cadre, said bureaucrats in the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) were also subjected to humiliation if they worked against the government’s will.

Emphasising that he was highly inspired by Modi’s slogan “Na Khaunga Na Khane Dunga” or “Zero tolerance against corruption”, Chaturvedi said he was later disappointed, when action was taken against him and not the corrupt officials after he exposed corruption at AIIMS and other departments where he had served earlier.

Chaturvedi, who is currently the deputy secretary at AIIMS, was removed from the post of Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO) of the institute in August 2014 much before the completion of his tenure that was till 2016.

Dedicating the award to all honest government officers across India, he said: “It is a strong morale booster for honest officers of the country who are discharging their duties in difficult circumstances.

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“My tribute to the founding fathers of the Constitution, particularly Sardar Patel, who was behind the creation of the all India services.”

Chaturvedi is the younger son of Uttar Pradesh Electricity Board retired engineer DS Chaturvedi. His elder brother Rajeev Chaturvedi is also an IFS officer of the Rajasthan cadre.

Noting that his grandfather was a freedom fighter and had participated in the 1942 Quit India Movement for which he was awarded in the year 1972 by the Centre, Chaturvedi said he was highly influenced by late former president APJ Abdul Kalam, who wanted to serve the country with the same positive attitude and selfless manner.

“During my convocation after the IFS course training, Kalam was the president, and he had come to our academy in August 2005 and awarded me two medals for excellence in training. His lecture was very inspirational,” Chaturvedi told IANS.

Asked if he had received any call from the health ministry, Chaturvedi answered in the negative, saying the first to congratulate him was Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Ashok Khemka, who also faced government action for his fight against corruption.

Recalling his fight against corruption at AIIMS, he said: “My approval as the AIIMS CVO had the nod of all the statutory authorities of the institute and was also a part of the commitment to the Parliamentary Committee. However, all these were violated and a false excuse was given that my appointment had no prior approval of the CVC and that was why I was removed.”

“The worst part is that even as I sent more documentary evidence to the PMO demanding a probe against the culprits, harassment against me accentuated, work was withdrawn from me, instead of taking action against them.

“Attempts were made to implicate me in fake cases, and spoil my annual confidential report, my promotion was withheld and even my own ministry issued a defamatory press release against me of so-called complaints and inquiries,” the officer added.

Indicating corruption in the political system, he said: “When I had to be removed from the CVO’s post, 20 signatures were recorded within 24 hours, and when my reasonable and lawful cases of promotion, cadre change, deputation were concerned, these were kept pending for months. It shows how the system is working.”

Stating that he just had one message for the entire country, Chaturvedi said: “As long as I am a part of the bureaucracy, I will serve the country with full honesty and transparency, regardless of the consequences I face.”

(by Rupesh Dutta, IANS)

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Empowering The Nation Through ‘Digital India Project’

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The digital india project includes several projects which will focus on better governance, knowledge. Wikimedia Commons
The digital india project includes several projects which will focus on better governance, knowledge. Wikimedia Commons
  • Digital India Project will boost the development process and will help the citizens to engage themselves in a hassle-free way
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Digital Media program to push the use of technology
  • The Ministry of Tourism has taken up the initiative of implementatingTourist Visa on Arrival enabled with Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA)

Digital India initiative has been launched by the government of India to increase digital connectivity and make governance more transparent. The initiative includes several projects which will focus on better governance, knowledge and universal phone connectivity across the country. Under the digital program, the government plans to introduce Public Internet Access Program, Broadband Highways, Universal Access to Mobile Connectivity and much more. These all platforms will boost the development process and will help the citizens to engage themselves in a hassle-free way.

Also Read: Section 377: Does It Really Has Anything To Do With Indian Culture?

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Digital Media program to push the use of technology to connect and empower people in areas relating to health, education, labour and employment, commerce, etc. The governance is shifting from e-governance to m-governance where “M” stands for mobile governance. The initiative is to bring big investments in the technology sector and this will further help in creating a participative, transparent and responsive government.

The governance is shifting from e-governance to m-governance where “M” stands for mobile governance. Wikimedia Commons
The governance is shifting from e-governance to m-governance where “M” stands for mobile governance. Wikimedia Commons

Here are some key initiatives which form a part of Digital India week:

  1. SWATCH BHAARAT app

The Swachhta Abhiyan is an initiative by the government for informing the citizens of sanitation and hygiene. The program has turned into a national campaign with citizens becoming active participants in cleanliness drive across the nation.

The dream of Mahatma Gandhi of a ‘Clean India’ is being realized with millions of people across the country joining the cleanliness initiatives of the government departments to make India clean as a part of this ‘Jan Andolan’.

The Swachhta Abhiyan is an initiative by the government for informing the citizens of sanitation and hygiene. Wikimedia Commons
The Swachhta Abhiyan is an initiative by the government for informing the citizens of sanitation and hygiene. Wikimedia Commons

Website: https://swachhbharat.mygov.in/

  1. PRADHAN MANTRI JAN-DHAN YOJANA (PMJDY)

Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana is a financial inclusion plan comprising an integrated approach to bind all the financial transactions of all the citizens. The plan contemplates universal access to banking facilities at least one basic banking account in every household, financial literacy, access to credit, insurance and pension facility.

The scheme proposes of channelling all Government benefits (from Centre / State / Local Body) to the beneficiaries’ accounts and pushing the Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) scheme of the Union Government.

Website: http://pmjdy.gov.in/

3. GOODS AND SERVICE TAX NETWORK (GSTN)

The GST System Project is a remarkable and complex IT initiative. It is for the first time that a uniform interface is established for the taxpayer and a common and shared IT infrastructure between the Centre and States.

Also Read: 10 Famous Indian Scientists Who Made The Difference

The platform is a trusted National Information Utility (NIU) that will help in achieving a reliable and efficient IT backbone for the smooth functioning of the Goods & Services Tax system. It enables economic agents to leverage the entire nation as one market with minimal indirect tax compliance cost.

Website: h ttp://www.gstn.org/index.php

4. FARMER PORTAL

The Farmer Portal provides all the relevant information and services to the farming community and private sector through information and communication technologies. It will help in supplementing the existing delivery channels provided for by the department.

The Farmer Portal provides all the relevant information and services to the farming community and private sector. Wikimedia Commons
The Farmer Portal provides all the relevant information and services to the farming community and private sector. Wikimedia Commons

Farmers’ Portal is an initiative to create a one-stop window for meeting all informational needs relating to Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Fisheries sectors production, sale/storage of an Indian farmer.

With this, Indian Farmer will not be required to scuffle through different websites for any information.

Website: http://farmer.gov.in/

5. eVISA

The Ministry of Tourism has taken up the initiative of implementatingTourist Visa on Arrival enabled with Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA). It strongly backed by Ministry of Home Affairs,  Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Civil Aviation for implementing this programme.

Also Read: Kalpana Chawala: The Woman Who Made The Difference

The e-Tourist Visa enables the foreign visitor to apply for an Indian Visa from his/her home country without visiting the Indian embassy and can also pay the visa fee online.

Website: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html

6. DIGITIZE INDIA

Digitize India is an initiative under the Digital India Program of the Government of India. Digitize India Platform will provide digitization of services of all the scanned document or physical documents for any official work.

The focus is to digitalize all the existing data which are in different formats into data extracts for document management

Website: https://digitizeindia.gov.in/

7. DIGITAL AIIMS

Through Digital AIIMS program, every Patient visiting AIIMS will be given a Digital Identity by the Unique Health Identification Number and it will be generated on an Aadhar platform.

Through Digital AIIMS program, every Patient visiting AIIMS will be given a Digital Identity. Wikimedia Commons
Through Digital AIIMS program, every Patient visiting AIIMS will be given a Digital Identity. Wikimedia Commons

The project was initiated in January 2015 with the creation of an effective linkage between AIIMS, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeiTY).

Website.http://ehospital.nic.in/ehospital/

8. DIGILOCKER

Targeted at the idea of paperless governance, DigiLocker is the flagship program of the Indian Government. The initiative aimed at transforming India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy.

DigiLocker runs parallel with Digital India’s vision, where every citizen of the country will be provided with a private space on a public cloud and making all documents/certificates available in this space.

Through this platform, issuance and verification of documents will be done in a manner, thus eliminating the requirement of any physical documents.

Website.https://digilocker.gov.in/