News & Press Releases
E-gov pushes in capital, Puri civic bodies
Housing and urban development department has stepped up the process for the implementation of e-governance project in Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Puri municipality.
It is being implemented under national mission mode project (NMMP) of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM).
E-governance is expected to provide a boost to IT requirements of the civic bodies, so as to ensure an improved effectiveness of delivery of municipal services to the citizens. The housing and urban development department has invited IT firms to participate in the bidding. The highest bidders as per rule will be entrusted with augmenting the IT system for facilitating e-governance.
Department secretary Injeti Srinivas said, "Whatever modules come under the e-governance system will be easier for citizens, since the existing e-municipality will remain unchanged. We are only going to introduce some new modules for better services. We are not only going to improve the software, but a lot hardware requirements will also be met," Srinivas said, adding that out of the total Rs 12 to 14 crore, around Rs 2 crore will be spent on developing the software.
The department has roped in Wipro consulting services to provide consultancy services during the implementation of the project. The state government had earlier, under the e-governance programme, launched e-municipality. This project was initially planned to be implemented in 44 urban local bodies, including the three municipal corporations - Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, and Berhampur. Now it has been extended to 103 urban local bodies covering the state.
Mall traders rue lack of facilities
Shop-keepers of BMC Keshari Mall at Unit-II Market Building here have alleged mismanagement by the builder. They also complained that the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has not been giving proper attention to their problems for which they have been incurring loss and a large number of shops in the mall are lying vacant.
"Due to mismanagement by the builder we have been incurring heavy losses and not many people are visiting the mall compared to other malls in the city. We have invested a lot of money to avail the shops, but we are feeling disappointed with the kind of response," said a member of BMC Keshari Mall Shopkeepers' Association requesting anonymity.
The shop-keepers said the entrance to the mall is not according to the map supplied to owners or the BMC. Open spaces in front of the shops in the basement and the top floor have been given on rent to restaurants, which is causing a lot of inconvenience to them. They also complained that some people have encroached on places in front of shops and there is absolutely no housekeeping inside the mall making it a mess.
City mayor Ananta Narayan Jena said, "The shops in the share of the BMC have not yet been given on rent and the maintenance of the shops is the lookout of the builder, and not of the BMC. We are a partner and that does not mean we will take care of everything. They have to go as per the agreement."
The mall has a 70,000 sq ft built-up area and 220 shops of which only 50% has been occupied so far. The mall has three-way opening and the shops are located in four floors - basement, ground, first and second.
"We have been suggesting the people of Keshari Project, the organization that executed the project in partnership with the BMC, to have one entrance and one exit. By this we can reduce the air-condition charges which is very high due to multiple entrances. The other benefit of single entrance and exit is that business will prosper in the mall," said P K Pradhan, another shop-keeper.
Birth, death certificates get 'digitised' from today
Doing away with the conventional practice of putting hand-written signature on birth and death certificates, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has introduced digitized signature of appropriate authorities. After successful trial run, the 'digitized' system will go full-fledged from Monday.
"Birth and death certificates with digitized signature of city health officer would be officially distributed from Monday," BMC commissioner Sanjib Kumar Mishra told. "SMS, barcode and e-mail features have also been included in the e-municipality application where applicants will get SMS and e-mail alerts during registration of birth and death certificates online in the future," Mishra said.
The civic body expects that the launch of digitized signature would enable faster issuance of birth and death certificates under the time-bound public delivery system. "Now, one need not wait for the city health officer to come and put his signature. His digitized signature can be put immediately after creation of the certificate," Mishra said.
Bhubaneswar is the second city after Cuttack where the digitized signature on birth and death certificates has been launched. The service was made functional in Cuttack last week. Last year, the BMC made it mandatory for hospitals and nursing homes here to communicate information relating to births and deaths to the city health office online.
Meanwhile, the proposed online registration of birth and death certificates seems a far cry. Though BMC last year uploaded a link on its website asking people to apply for the certificates online, the service often encounters technical glitch. "And if at all we manage to apply online, we will have to visit the city health office to submit documents. It does not make sense in online service," a citizen said.
BMC officials said people can submit documents and make payment for the certificates online soon. "At present, people can apply online for the certificates on www.ulbodisha.gov.in. We will spread awareness about the website and integrate it with the BMC website," said an officer. BMC issues about 90 birth and death certificates in a day.
Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation demolishes 207 illegal shops
In a massive eviction drive, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Friday demolished around 207 unauthorized shops at two different places here.
Sources said while 200 unauthorized shops behind the Unit-II market complex were razed, seven were destroyed on the stretch between Rajmahal square and Sishu Bhawan.
"The unauthorized shops behind Unit-II market were blocking the roads. Seven shops near Rajmahal, which included two Omfed milk counters, were also demolished. Hoardings, boards and other goods put up along the road near Sishu Bhawan Square by around 14 vendors were also removed," BMC licensing Officer Srimanta Mishra said.
The eviction drive went off peacefully in police presence and there was no resistance from the shop owners, he added.
"Demolition in Unit-II market was necessary to ease traffic movement," said BMC commissioner Sanjib Mishra.
Bhubaneswar survey to rehabilitate vendors
The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to begin a survey of vending zones soon to rehabilitate street vendors in the city. This was decided at the first meeting of the Town Vending Committee (TVC) chaired by BMC commissioner Sanjib Mishra here on Tuesday.
Sources said for the survey, a format will be prepared and given to the existing vendors at different locations of the city to fill up. The format will have information such as name of the vendor, activity, location, distance of vending zone from home, whether water, light and sanitation facilities are available at the vending zone. The survey work is likely to start in the last week of February.
The TVC was constituted on December 28 as per the Odisha Urban Street Vendors policy, which was formulated in April by the state government. TVC comprises of 10 corporators, three representatives of the vendors, one nominee of police and three representatives of resident welfare associations.
Sources said earlier around 2,200 street vendors of the total 22,000 have been rehabilitated in 56 vending zones. "We are happy that the corporation in TVC meeting decided to expedite the survey work. Although the TVC formation was bit delayed, the good thing is that survey work will be taken up in an organised manner whereby the genuine vendors will be benefitted," said president of Road Side Vendors' Association Pratap Sahu.