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Everything you need to know about digitisation of gram panchayats

So far, 178,271 gram panchayats have been made service ready with high-speed broadband connectivity under the BharatNet project
Everything you need to know about digitisation of gram panchayats
Everything you need to know about digitisation of gram panchayats (Theme Photo: Shutterstock)

Under Digital India Programme, Ministry of Panchayati Raj is implementing e-Panchayat Mission Mode Project (MMP) with the aim to transform the functioning of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) by making them more transparent, accountable, and effective. Taking the digitisation of gram panchayats forward, the ministry launched eGramSwaraj, a work-based comprehensive application for PRIs under the e-Panchayat MMP in April 2020. This application encompasses all aspects of panchayat functioning such as planning, budgeting, accounting, monitoring, asset management among others functions on a single digital platform including online payments, Union Minister of State for Panchayati Raj, Kapil Moreshwar Patil said in a written reply in Lok Sabha on Tuesday.

The ministry constantly engages with the states through virtual and physical training and enablement for states to adopt the eGramSwaraj application. So far, 2.48 lakh gram panchayats have prepared and uploaded their Gram Panchayat Development Plans (GPDPs) for 2022-23. Under 14th Finance Commission, 1.44 lakh GPs and 91,607 GPs have carried out online transactions during 2020-21 and 2021-22 respectively. Similarly, 1.93 lakh GPs have carried online transactions under 15th Finance Commission during 2021-22, the minister further informed the Lok Sabha.

Broadband connectivity to gram panchayats under BharatNet

Further, for attaining the vision of Digital India, BharatNet project is being implemented by Department of Telecommunications in a phased manner to connect all the Gram Panchayats by broadband in the country. So far, 178,271 gram panchayats have been made service ready under the BharatNet project in the country. The scope of BharatNet on 30.06.2021 has been extended up to all inhabited villages beyond GPs in the country. The targeted date for the completion of the BharatNet project to provide broadband connectivity to all gram panchayats and equivalent in the country is August 2023, Patil said.

Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan

Panchayati Raj is a state subject. Thus, providing infrastructural facilities to gram panchayats (GPs) is primarily the responsibility of states. However, the Centrally sponsored scheme of revamped Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan (RGSA) being implemented from 01.04.2022 to 31.03.2026, supplements the efforts of states on limited scale by providing financial support for certain infrastructural facilities for GPs such as gram panchayat bhawans (buildings), computers and peripherals with special focus on north-eastern states, the minister informed the Lok Sabha while replying a question on digitisation of gram panchayats in the country.

Read more: Nearly 2 lakh gram panchayats make digital payments of Rs.70,000 Cr in 2021-22 through e-GramSwaraj 

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