Uttarakhand to launch digital locker scheme to check graft
Aiming to check corruption in government services, Uttarakhand has decided to facilitate people to open digital locker accounts to store soft copies of their documents like educational and birth certificatesUpdated: May 08, 2018 22:09 IST
Aiming to check corruption in government services, Uttarakhand has decided to facilitate people to open digital locker accounts to store soft copies of their documents like educational and birth certificates.
The cloud storage or online data base will be maintained by the central government.
“The digital locker scheme will help eliminate corruption in some 97 agencies issuing birth or death certificates, licenses, degrees, land records and school certificates etc,” said Information Technology (IT) secretary R K Sudhanshu.
“It will also help check various frauds including those relating to land and banking transactions besides sparing the people the inconvenience of carrying loads of documents to prove their antecedents.”
The digital locker scheme is being launched under the Centre’s Digital India Programme that provides a platform for issuance and verification of documents and certificates in a digital way.
Amit Sinha, director of Information Technology Development Agency (ITDA), said the digital locker scheme will also be provided legal backing.
“A related law that might soon be introduced to legalise the digital locker platform in the state would be based on rules notified by the Centre on February 8 last year,” he said referring to the Informational Technology (Preservation and Retention of information by Intermediaries Providing Digital Locker Facilities rules which were amended in 2017.
Sinha said village-level entrepreneurs manning some 7,000 Common Service Centres (CSCs) across the state have been deputed to help people create digital locker accounts.
“The CSCs will help people create some five lakh digital locker accounts by August,” he said adding digital lockers could easily be downloaded from mobile apps.
“We roped in the CSCs because not many in rural areas are tech savvy and need help in downloading digital lockers from mobile apps,” Sinha said.
Experts at ITDA said the intervention is also needed because most people in the rural areas of the hill state don’t have Aadhar cards and other essential documents like birth and death certificates.
“The village-level entrepreneurs manning the CSCs not only help people create their digital locker accounts but also have them issued Aadhar cards and other important documents like death and birth certificates”, said Alok Tomar, an IT expert.
Sinha said the ITDA has plans to boost the internet connectivity in the hills, which is slow and tends to hamper the pro-people IT related initiatives.
“To tackle the issue we are now planning to boost the Wi-Fi connectivity even in the remote areas of the state, so that several IT related initiatives like digital lockers that have been launched by the ITDA could smoothly operate,” he said.
Sinha said once a student has forwarded his digitalised documents to a university, for instance, the latter could get them authenticated online by the issuer agencies.
“The best part of the scheme is that the digitalised documents can’t be tampered with as they are preserved in the cloud storage,” he said.
Sudhanshu described cloud as an online ecosystem where digitalised documents could be viewed both by the issuer and requesting agencies.
According to him, the online ecosystem or the cloud will be accessible to both state-run and private agencies.
“The system has been introduced so that even privately run schools or universities can access the documents of students seeking admission through the latter’s digital lockers via the cloud storage,” Sudhanshu said.
Tomar said all Aadhaar-based digitalised documents or certificates issued by different agencies like educational institutions or government departments after 2015 will get automatically uploaded to the common ecosystem or the cloud.
“The documents issued by both private and state-run agencies before 2015, will be digititalised before being uploaded to the cloud storage.”