Large number of departments yet to onboard Karnataka govt's data transparency portal

Fewer seekers and givers of data on 'Mahiti Kanaja', which is meant to complement the RTI Act

Published: 13th October 2021 10:41 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th October 2021 10:41 PM   |  A+A-

Computer, Mouse, Online

For representational purpose. (File Photo)

Express News Service

BENGALURU: The revamped version of the 'Mahiti Kanaja' portal was released on Tuesday but the e-governance department which had created and running this umbrella portal for common citizens to access without compromising on their anonymity, has got less than favourable response from departments.

Just 50 out of 257 department's that were approached to get onboard the 'Mahiti Kanaja' portal that complements RTI by promoting transparency.

The portal has put on the public domain some information pertaining 157 services provided by the government. But hesitation is seen between departments to send across statistics for the portal.

Data of 50 departments is just a fraction of the 400 plus departments, an official confirmed.

High Data sets from Urban Development department, Public Works Department, Police Department, Housing Department, Health and Family Welfare SErvices, Women and Child Welfare, Transport, Backward Class Welfare Department, Department of commerce and industries, Kannada and Culture Department, Department of Sainik Welfare and resettlement among others is missing from the portal.

Asked if the other department were yet to digitise their data and hence not approached for coming onboard the portal, Additional Chief Secretary in the Department of Personnel and Administrative Reforms (e-Governance) Rajeev Chawla said that was not the case.

Chawla admitted that data such as how many roads are repaired by the BBMP in the past six months, or who is given mining licences in the state, or who is getting BPL ration cards is not in the database yet. However he said by February-March, the portal hopes to have 500 services in total in the data set.

Project director of Mahiti Kanaja, Shreevyas HM said that there were a few departments that did not have any information to share with the public -- for instance the translation department.

Demand crunch

While the supply of data from the department is incomplete, the process of reaching this data to the masses also has a lacuna, admit officials. The  system is relying on user feedback to stitch up loopholes and provide more relevant data to taxpayers.

The portal has received 2,06,067 visits since its origin in 2020, but that is not considered a large number. The problem is to reach this information to everyone in the state which includes those with little or no digital literacy.

While the department is looking at increasing the digital footfall on the portal to one lakh a day, Chawla agreed that making the public aware of the portal remains a challenge, one that even Chief Minister Bommai had pointed out.


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