Setting a new precedence, the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Public Grievances Dr Jitendra Singh initiated a telephone feedback mechanism for grievance redressal of the citizens.
He himself called three citizens to take their feedback about the grievances they had registered on the Centralised Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System Portal.
About India's public grievance redress and monitoring system:
The Centralised Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS) Portal, a web based portal, has been designed and implemented in all the Ministries and Departments of Government of India.
A customised software with local language interface has also been designed for the state governments. This software is called CPGRAMS - States.
The Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, Ministry of Personnel has Public Grievances Division is responsible for issuing policy guidelines coordinating and monitoring of issues regarding redress of public grievances and staff grievances in general and for the central government in particular.
The state module of CPGRAMS has been implemented in 9 States and Union Territories namely Haryana, Odisha, Rajasthan, Puducherry, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Uttrakhand, Jharkhand and Punjab.
The PG Division also coordinates the Citizen Charter and Information and Facilitation Counters (IFCs) initiative of the Government of India.
With the objective of improving public service delivery and making governments citizen-centric, an assessment improvement framework called "Sevottam" has been developed.
Support is provided to Ministries and Departments and also State Governments to introduce the Sevottam framework for better service delivery.
The Division also provides secretarial support to the Standing Committee for grievances to the Joint Secretary and above level officers headed by the Cabinet Secretary.
Minister seeks feedback from three complainants:
He personally called three complainants chosen on random basis, who had registered their grievances in the Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) and their grievances were disposed off.
The Minister sought their feedback regarding the response given by the Government to the grievances.
These complainants included Shri Vijay V Lambat (Nagpur, Maharashtra) who had complained regarding the refund of money from Income Tax Department.
The second person contacted by the Minister was Shri Aravindbabu Pormar from Bangalore. He had complained against Railways and sought refund of money from the Ministry of Railways.
The third person contacted was Shri Paladugu Samba Siva Rao from Odisha, who had grievance related to Provident fund with the Ministry of Labour and Employment.
The citizens contacted thanked the Minister and the department. They also suggested that the citizens should be contacted once over phone before closing the grievance. The Minister assured that the department is committed to take steps in this direction.
Jitendra Singh at the occasion:
The Minister said that this direct citizen contact through telephone will not only enable us to assess the level of satisfaction received by the complaints after the redressal of grievance, it will also help in offering us valuable inputs required to improve the grievance redressal mechanism.
He said that this is in line with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's dictum of minimum government, maximum governance with citizen centric approach.
In the current age of social media and web portal, this approach will also give the citizens a feeling of direct involvement in the government's grievance redressal mechanism.
The Minister said that in future, he himself will be calling the citizens at random and verify whether their complaints have been disposed off.
He also said that the Secretary or senior official from the department will also make call to the citizens to verify the status of grievance.
He further informed that during the last one year, ending December 2015, the grievance cell has received nearly 10 lakh complaints as compared to the average of 2-3 lakh yearly complaints earlier.
He also expressed his happiness over the fact that nearly 90% complaints are redressed now.
Dr Singh also said that the rising number of grievances being registered by the citizens are an indication of the increasing faith of public in the personal interest in the redressal of grievances of the public by engaging with them over phone. The social media will also be used in the grievance redressal, he added.
Number of grievances disposed off:
Devendra Chaudhry, Secretary, DARPG said that now on an average 1,500 grievances are disposed off in a day and nearly 45,000 grievances in a month. He also said that the department has made a list of more than 12,000 officers across the departments who are being contacted for the redressal of grievances.
The receipts of grievances have increased from about 5 lakhs to about 12 lakhs and at the same time the disposal has also increased from about 4 lakhs to nearly 11 lakh during the period of June, 2014 to February, 2016.