E-Governance in Indian Banks: ICICI Bank
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Published: Mon, 07 May 2018
Before the start of my second year of PGDBM, I got an opportunity to have a corporate exposure at ICICI regional bank. In addition to this exposure, it also allowed to implement some of our course learning to real business world situations. My internship with ICICI regional bank started on 28th June and extended till 9th august. ICICI Bank is India’s second-largest bank with total assets of Rs. 3,634.00 billion (US$ 81 billion) at March 31, 2010. The Bank has a diverse network of 2,016 branches and about 5,219 ATMs in India and presence in 18 countries. They offer a wide range of banking products & financial services to corporate and retail customers through a variety of delivery channels (www.icicibank.com).
At my very first day, I got the opportunity to talk to some of the senior managers at my office, and they suggested me that I should see the working on their different departments and then select my department after one week. During this week, I interacted with almost every department personnel. They told me what their general day is like and what they do and how their part is important for achieving company’s strategic goals. In my second week, I chose government banking group of ICICI bank, which comes under corporate banking group.
Government Banking Group of ICICI bank offers world-class banking services leveraging on state of art technology platform and to meet complete financial needs of the government and its enterprises.Â Their aim is to lever their advanced technology platform and ability to deliver customized solutions to meet the specific needs of each and every client & emerge as the preferred banker for all government departments and corporations.(www.icicibank.com)
My mentor Mr.H; relationship manager at the same department, gave me an overview about their department and how the functions. In my 2nd week of working as a management trainee to GBG, he assigned me a live summer internship project, where I was required to contact government authorities, which were falling under national E-governance plan and offer them our bank services.
Route map of my project
E-GOVERANCE: Foundation for better and acceptable institution mechanism
“Use e-governance to fight corruption”- Kalam
E-government is the use of information and communication technology (ICT) to promote more efficient and cost-effective government, more convenient government services, greater public access to information, and more government accountability to citizens (www.adb.org). It goes beyond providing provision of online services and also, covers the use of IT for strategic planning and reaching government’s development goals.
It is a way by which governments use the new technologies to provide people with more convenient and reliable access to government information and services, to improve the quality of the services and also, providing greater opportunities to participate in democratic institutions and processes. “E-Government provides with some tremendous opportunities to move forward in the 21st century with better quality, cost-effective, government services and a better relationship between citizens and their government.”
(Aggarwal, mittal et al, 2007)
“E-Governance is no longer an Option – It is a reality and a necessity of Governance”- S. Lakshminarayanan
E-Governance & Its relevance
“One click is deemed good enough to cut the much-dreaded Indian red-tape to shreds. Another one takes the wind out of all those touts hanging around public offices. Public accountability and responsive services seem suddenly just a blip way.” (www.dqindia.ciol.com)
Good governance is based on the premise that the laws and procedures are transparent, clearly defined & understood by those governed and the implementation is also quick without any hurdles. However, the governance in a developing country like ours is a challenge, as majority of the governed (citizens) are educationally & socio-economically challenged. Moreover in developing countries, the governments are formed through democratic means, the challenge of governance is much larger as the governors themselves are at times not very clear about the various rules and procedures. Also, at times, the rules and procedures are explicitly defined in the constitution or statutes, but they themselves creates hindrances in the path of governance due to lack of procedural clarities. In such a state, the answer lies in providing a mechanism that is quick, interactive, transparent and has a clear repository of rules and regulations, which provide support in decision making for both the governors and the governed and this mechanism is e- governance, providing the benefit of being clear cut, transparent, interactive, easy to implement and aiming to provide solution in the quickest possible time frame.
E-Governance, at ground level will provides three basic change potentials for good governance for development:
- Automation: Replacing (at least, to some extent) current human-executed processes, which involve accepting, storing, processing and transmitting information.
- Informatisation: Supporting current human-executed information processes.
- Transformation: Supporting new human-executed information processes.
These change potentials, in turn, can bring five main benefits to governance for development:
- Governance that is cheaper: Producing the same outputs at lower total cost.
- Governance that does more: Producing more outputs at the same total cost.
- Governance that is quicker: Producing the same outputs at the same total cost in less time.
- Governance that works better: Producing the same outputs at the same total cost in the same time, but to a higher quality standard.
- Governance that is innovative: Producing new outputs.
The Global shifts towards increased deployment of IT (Information technology) by governments emerged in the nineties, with the coming of World Wide Web. The e-governance initiatives have come a long way since then. With the increase use of internet and mobile connections, the people are learning to exploit new mode of access in wide ranging ways. Today generation expect more information and services to be available online from government organizations to further their civic and professional lives, thus creating abundant evidence that the new ‘e-citizenship’ is taking hold.
E-governance originated in India during the seventies with a focus on developing in- house government applications in the area of defence, economic monitoring, planning and the using IT to manage data intensive functions related to elections, census, tax administration etc. The efforts of National Informatics Center (NIC) to connect all the district headquarters during the eighties led to a significant development in this field. During early nineties, IT technologies were supplemented with ICT technologies, for wider sectoral applications .Primarily the emphasis has been on automation and computerization, the state governments have also endeavoured to use ICT tools into connectivity, networking, setting up systems for processing information and delivering services.
At a micro level, it ranges from IT automation in individual departments, electronic file handling, and access to entitlements, public grievance systems, service delivery for high volume routine transactions like payment of bills, tax etc. The thrust has varied across initiatives, while some focusing on enabling citizen-state interface for various government services, and others focusing on bettering livelihoods.
E -Goverance Intiatives in India
“The notion of e-governance has its roots in attempts in many countries to ‘modernise’ government in response to perceived citizen dissatisfaction or disengagement.”(Sihna, 2006)
India is a developing country with a population of about 1.2 billion spread over 28 geographically uneven states. Interestingly, transparency and citizen-centric government, expected broad outcome of e-Governance, is not new to India. The rock edicts of Emperor Ashoka, 3 Century BC provides an excellent example of this interface – unambiguous and Transparent government information was available at public place for people convenience.
In most of the states in the India, people speak different languages and dialects; having varying literacy levels and distinct socio-cultural attitudes that have affected not only economic progress, but also our legislature. “However, over and above, these fragmented population, there is an overlying layer of information technology professionals or ‘knowledge workers’, who seem to have indirectly pioneered e-Governance initiatives.”(Aggarwal, mittal et al, 2007)
The Central and State administrations, ports, customs, public tax system and education system of our country has been pioneers in e-Governance India. A number of state governments has already implemented e-Governance initiatives, which are aimed at being cost effective, while offering various facilities to citizens.
National E-Governance plan
The Government of India (GOI) has formulated a national program – the National e-governance Plan, which is an attempt to cover all the important areas relating to e-Governance – Policy, Infrastructure, Finances, Project Management, Government Process, Finances, Reengineering, Capacity Building, Training, Assessment etc. across the Central and State Governments.
The plan seeks to lay the foundation and provide the impetus for long-term growth of e-Governance. Their plan seeks to create the right governance and institutional mechanisms, setting up the core infrastructure and policies and implement a number of Mission Mode Projects at the centre, state and integrated service levels to create a citizen-centric and business-centric environment for governance.
The vision of this plan is to make sure that all Government services are accessible to the common man in his/her locality through common service delivery outlets. “The implementation strategy envisages clear definition of service goals and metrics for each project and structured stakeholder consultations with all stakeholders including citizens and civil society organizations before the service goals of each project are firmed up.”( Das & Chandrashekhar, 2007).
(Source: Das & Chandrashekhar, 2007)
The above diagram give E-Governance framework that includes back-end (databases of different government agencies, service providers, state governments etc.), middleware and front-end delivery channels (PCs, mobile phones, kiosks, integrated service centers etc) for citizens and businesses. The middle-ware comprises of communication and security infrastructure, gateways and integrated services, aimed at facilitating integration of inter-departmental services.
Challenges of e-Governance in India
“Sharma (2002) points out that the culture of governance in India has been characterized by secrecy, seniority and corruption. These need to be addressed with a vengeance if the grand vision of e-Governance across India has to become a reality” (Agarwal & Mittal et al,2003). The initiatives taken are more focused on government department, automaton rather than anything to do with the citizens. They might solve a number of problems of government employees but not even a single solution is totally focused on citizen thathas come up in India. Indian citizens are still forced to move from one department to another,and from one table to another in order to get their work done. In lieu of this, the National Task Force has also made several recommendations. The fundamental strategic challenge faced is e-Readiness for e-Governance
It is a multifold challenge posing basic questions like:
- Is required Data Systems Infrastructure Ready?
- Is required Legal Infrastructure Ready?
- Is required Human Infrastructure Ready?
- Is required Institutional Infrastructure Ready?
- Is required Technological Infrastructure Ready?
- Is required Leadership and Strategic Thinking Ready?
Role of banking in E-goverance
“Indian banking sector through its network of over 74,000 branches provides efficient and swift cash management and payment mechanisms ensures timely availbility of the funds to the ultimate beneficiaries.”- RP Sihna, Deputy Managing Director (IT), State bank of India
E-goverance goes beyond provision of online services and includes,the use of IT for strategic planning and reaching development goals of the government to the citizens. Government prime concern is that the revenue deposited at various branches of banks throughtout the country are collected expeditiously and every rupee spend on the social sector plans & schemes reaches the intended beneficiaries quickly and directly. It is therefore, imperative that the indian banking sector which have a wide network af over 74,000 branches provides efficent and swift cash management system and payment mechanisms to ensure timely availability of the funds.
Banks apart from taking the technology beyond urban centers to remote areas,that are still unbanked and underserviced,but also serving as a channel for credit delievery and innovative products to the poor and underprivileged sections of society. With an efficent deployment of technology, banks can step in and provide access to banking facilities like opening of accounts, money transfer services,payments of bills etc. Banks provide payment solutions to conduct E-payments with government departments using smart cards/credit cards or making a direct debit from their account (Internet banking) when the due date falls.
In short, bank can help in the process of E-Goverance by 3 methods:
ICICI government banking group & its E-Goverance intitatives
The government banking group of ICICI,falls under their corporate banking group and it specifically cater to the government entities and institutions. “We ensure compliance of specific regulatory requirements while customizing these products and services for the government. Our constant endeavor is to fulfill the specific objectives of the government at various district, state, and national levels.”(www.icicibank.com)
Their are the accredited Banker to the Ministry of Civil Aviation. All payments and receipts of this Ministry across the country are routed through their network.
They are the approved banker to collect direct taxes as well as indirect Taxes for the central Government and state’s sales taxes/ VAT in the States of Delhi, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat.
Approved bank for disbursement of pensions for central government and defense employees.
Online Collection of fees for Director General Foreign Trade (DGFT)
Online collection of fees and Stamp duty under MCA-21 & Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)
E-ticketing initiative for Indian Railways
Online Funds Disbursement and Tracking System for Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW)
E-goverance intitative undertaken by me as a summer trainee (live) in ICICI bank
My mentor gave me a project where I was required to study different government authorities and departments falling under E-Goverance plan of government of India,to select one authority where ICICI bank can fit in and offer them their services and also, explaining how it will be benefical to not only them , but also to the citizen on the receiving end. As I was placed in Delhi corporate office, I thought it will be good idea to start exploring the authorities which wall under Delhi. My mentor, Mr.Hitesh Setya, also considered it as a good idea as it was easy to talk and even meet these authorities.
Delhi Government Departments cover health, revenue & tax, audit, arts & culture, transport, administrative reforms, health and family higher education, IT, Gurdwara elections, administrative reforms agricultural marketing, Fire service economics and statistics,health and family,industries and many others. (A comprehensive lists of the department has been given in the appendix).
All the departments of Delhi government works for enhancing the socio-economic viability of the city. Each and every Delhi department is entrusted with a separate set of responsibilities and duties.
I studied almost every department falling under delhi government authority and saw the scope of E-goverance in those departments.After working on this for a period of 2 weeks,I came down to the following authorities names:
Delhi Development Authority
Delhi passport authority
After contacting these agenices and meeting their respective officals ,I narrowed with DDA (it looks after the orderly-yet-rapid development of Delhi),as they are already in the process of making their database and this department has a bad reputation when it come to red tapism and bureaucratic attitude .Under this department,a number of activities are taken care of ranging from tenders, housing,buildings ,various registrations etc.I needed to select one major activity which will become my report’s focal point.I selected DDA procedure for “conversion from leasehold to freehold .
DDA-SCOPE FOR E-GOVERANCE
“Delhi Development Authority (DDA), time moves at its own sweet, slow pace. And in order to get your work down, you need an athlete’s stamina and a monk’s patience” (Roy,hindustan times,2010)
The Delhi Development Authority’s (DDA) was established in the year 1957,and nearly after 50 years of existance ,it has come out with a grand vision for 2010: to become a “high performance and people friendly” organisation. This mission comes not a year too soon for the land development agency.The authority referred itself as the city’s ninth builder, touches the life of almost every second Delhiite.Since its initiationin 1957, DDA has worked towards the development ofthe city and has created or facilitated about 1 million dwelling units to date. including allotment of more than 3 lakh flats, plots to Cooperative Groups and residential plots .Apart from the construction of 600 big and small commercial centres and allotment of industrial and institutional plots.DDA’s dreary and dusty file-laden headquarter, Vikas Sadan, gets nearly about 700 visitors daily.(Roy,hindustan times,2010)
The crowd thronging at the the DDA offices explains that it is not easy to own a DDA flat or plot,which the authority sells at affordable rates.What’s even tougher than this ,is getting the possession letters, conversion from leasehold to freehold or even changing the title deeds.
Add from sumwhere else
In the labyrinthine corridors of the DDA office, file’s journey begins from one table and then meanders through at almost all the tables of the office and this journey in the can take anything from a month to years.
The DDA babus take ages to move files and the smallest lacunae in your documents can slow the process by months.
DDA’s citizen’s charter promises disposal of transactions a specific time frame of between 15 and 90 days. These promises, however, remain cosily embedded in the glossy booklet.
This is where the touts come in.
For a handsome fee–anything between Rs 40,000 to Rs 1 lakh–depending on the `complexity’ of your case, touts can speed up the process of getting your job done. Thanks to DDA’s initiatives to curb the tout menace, these assistants-for-hire can now be found lingering in the parking lots and small photostat shops and eateries outside Vikas Sadan.
“We can get any job done as we have a `setting’ with officials inside the building,” says a tout, who doesn’t wish to be identified. “The rates have gone up though as DDA has become stricter about these things now.”
“Unless you have deep pockets, getting your application approved from the DDA is next to impossible,” says Umesh Sharma (name changed on request), who has been trying to transfer his flat from his father’s name, who died many years ago, to his own for the past six years. “Every official expects to be bribed and you have to grease many palms.”
“The officials say the property we bought for a few thousands decades ago will now sell for lakhs but they don’t stand to gain anything from it,” he said.
“If you are transferring a property to your name or converting it from leasehold to freehold to sell it, they want their share,” Sharma said.
TOMORROW The passport office is a riddle. There’s paperwork, there are meetings and a single error can deboard your plans.
E goverance in India has touched various areas like income tax,passport,pensions,company affaris, police,municpalities ,ariculture ,central excise and many more.In my report ,we will be dicussing three main areas namely, Sales/Commercial Tax Department(VAT),MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) & NDMC(New Delhi municpal council) , income tax department.
B.MCD & NDMC
The National Capital Territory of Delhi (NCT) comprises three local bodies, MCD, NDMC and Cantonment Board. The MCD comprises of about 96 per cent of the area and population of the Union Territory (UT)of Delhi. The Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, 1957 was amended in August, 1994 to bring it in tune with the Constitutional provisions of Part IXA. In respect of New Delhi Municipal Council, which consists of only 3 per cent of the area and 3 per cent of the population of National Capital Territory of Delhi.( http://www.ndmc.gov.in/AboutNDMC/NAboutus.aspx)
2.1 Property tax :The Property department is one of the tax revenue-earning departments of NDMC. Revenue is realized as (i) property tax from about 12,000 private properties and Government properties constructed prior to 26th January, 1950 and (ii) service charges from the government properties constructed after 26-01-1950. Property tax is an obligatory tax levied on all lands and buildings in New Delhi. It is a percentage of the rateable value of lands and buildings. The rates of taxes are determined by the Council from year-to-year basis.
Facilities available online:
Rate List/ Method of Calculation of Property Tax
- transport department
- irrigation and flood control department
- planning department
- SC/ST/OBC/Minorities welfare department
- informations and public relations department
- industries department
- land and building department
- police department
- forest department
- administrative reforms department
- directorate of audit
- economics and statistics department
- chit fund department
- art, culture and language department
- directorate of education
- directorate of training and technical education
- environment department
- development department
- health and family department
- excise, entertainment and luxury tax department
- public works department
- weights and measures department
- sales tax department
- tihar prisons
- services department
- directorate of prevention of food adulteration
- directorate of agricultural marketing
- labor department
- social welfare department
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