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June 13, 2019 00:20:57 |

Information and its value

One of the cornerstones of good governance and a transparent administration system is the smooth flow of information. Each year government departments function to provide needed services to public and the state. It requires besides planning and coordination, documentation. The latter is important as it gives a blue print of what a particular department or its section has been able to achieve in a given time. As a matter of fact several departments highlight their important activities and achievements. But unless it is that once-in-a-year exercise of publishing the work done, it remains close to public scrutiny. Then in assembly sessions legislators pick up issues and the respective departments under their control make the effort to divulge information on any subject. Since there are not too many fruitful sessions and not many departments in real document and publish what they have done in a given year, very important information remains out of bound for ordinary people. This reduces transparency as government departments feel they are not bound to reveal any information regarding status of the work on projects or initiatives. To take care of this drawback in the administration, the Right to Information was given a legal status and incorporated in the administrative setup, at least in word. The right was meant to empower a person to seek and acquire any information regarding in government departments and agencies. Most of the inquiries and criticisms have been focused at one side of this information model – from a seeker’s side. In J&K, government departments although most have assigned their information officers but they have been found uncooperative in most cases. There are complaints about information being either barred or not provided on time, which should not have happened. The other side of this information model is even dimmer than the said one. From an information provider side, it is more important that the government departments reveal information no matter if there are seekers or not. It is the duty of the departments to keep people updated about all that is happening. It is time that the government starts paying attention to the importance of information age. In the digital era, the governance as a process can be made much simpler and easily manageable. To kick start the change, different departments must be directed to review the information flow and all modern aids that either are in use or can be employed to ease the job of the administration of the state.

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June 13, 2019 00:20:57 |

Information and its value

              

One of the cornerstones of good governance and a transparent administration system is the smooth flow of information. Each year government departments function to provide needed services to public and the state. It requires besides planning and coordination, documentation. The latter is important as it gives a blue print of what a particular department or its section has been able to achieve in a given time. As a matter of fact several departments highlight their important activities and achievements. But unless it is that once-in-a-year exercise of publishing the work done, it remains close to public scrutiny. Then in assembly sessions legislators pick up issues and the respective departments under their control make the effort to divulge information on any subject. Since there are not too many fruitful sessions and not many departments in real document and publish what they have done in a given year, very important information remains out of bound for ordinary people. This reduces transparency as government departments feel they are not bound to reveal any information regarding status of the work on projects or initiatives. To take care of this drawback in the administration, the Right to Information was given a legal status and incorporated in the administrative setup, at least in word. The right was meant to empower a person to seek and acquire any information regarding in government departments and agencies. Most of the inquiries and criticisms have been focused at one side of this information model – from a seeker’s side. In J&K, government departments although most have assigned their information officers but they have been found uncooperative in most cases. There are complaints about information being either barred or not provided on time, which should not have happened. The other side of this information model is even dimmer than the said one. From an information provider side, it is more important that the government departments reveal information no matter if there are seekers or not. It is the duty of the departments to keep people updated about all that is happening. It is time that the government starts paying attention to the importance of information age. In the digital era, the governance as a process can be made much simpler and easily manageable. To kick start the change, different departments must be directed to review the information flow and all modern aids that either are in use or can be employed to ease the job of the administration of the state.

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