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We both are introverts and we both bond with each other over work.s flagship company East India Hotels (EIH).doing politics? Going for early polls is just one possible step to rid itself of the overcautious strategy characterised by non-politics Instead of collecting small victories in the shadow of impending defeats (in four states come November)the Congress needs to inject itself with some political adrenaline And before next Aprilthis is its last chance of doing so Once it misses this momentit would be entangled in small-time politics of carving a majority without mandate The author teaches political science at the University of Pune For all the latest Opinion News download Indian Express App More Related NewsPublished: March 13 2013 3:18 am Related News With the Union cabinet having approved the Right of Citizens for Time Bound Delivery of Goods and Services and Redressal of their Grievances Bill2011 (hereafter referred to as the GR bill)Parliament has an opportunity to enact a law that would give citizens a way in which to hold government functionaries accountable An effective GR act has the potential to transform the relationship between an ordinary Indian and the bureaucracy It builds on the transparency regime of the RTI by encouraging citizens to use information to enforce accountability We have no shortage of innovations in lawbut our constant refrain is that we are unable to implement them Beginning with the RTI Act2005India has enacted a slew of rights-based legislations: NREGAthe Forest Rights Act and the RTE Act In many statesthere are public service guarantee acts that convert the delivery of every notified public service into an entitlement The only law that has some effective redress mechanism built into it is the RTIand we must learn lessons from it The GR bill should provide every person the right to make a complaint and create an architecture for them to receive a time-bound written reply Failure to do so shouldlike the RTI lawattract a penalty to be paid from the concerned officers pocket What makes this bill an important complement to the public service delivery bills of the states is its potential to hold both the implementing functionary and the supervisory structure accountable Indeedthis bill seeks to make the supervisory superstructure the linchpin for the redress of grievancesby holding supervisors (grievance redress officers) accountable for not sorting out peoples complaints Supervisors in our bureaucracy are there to ensure deliverybut have completely escaped real accountability Like the PIO in the RTI Actthe GRO here should be made accountable to the people The lack of an effective mechanism to deal with everyday grievances characterises the functioning of almost all government departments The basic mechanisms to engage with the system have not been put in place: an acknowledgement of the petition or complaint mandated through a dated receipt; a participatory process of inquiry; a time-bound reasoned reply through a speaking order; and an independent appellate authority at the district or sub-district level who can impose penalties and award compensation for non-compliance The introduction of the bill in Parliament in December 2011 was a welcome step in trying to create this architecture Howeverthe bill had several lacunae that needed to be addressed It was referred to the parliamentary standing committeewhich made several useful recommendations in its report to Parliament in August 2012 The bill has now been approved by the cabinet Some critical provisions must be included in any GR legislation to ensure that the mechanism has the institutional capacity to effectively receiveinquire into and redress any complaints relating to deficiencies in the functioning of government Firstthe legislation must mandate each public authority to develop a citizens charter enumerating all the servicesgoods and obligations of the public authority along with relevant timelinesnorms and standards All the obligations of the public authority under any lawpolicyprogrammeorder or schemeshould be comprehensively stated in the charter The charter must be developed in a participatory manner and must be periodically updated The obligations of proactive disclosure under Section 4 of the RTI Act should be used as a means to build the larger ecosystem of responsibilities by enumerating the job chart of each functionary so that responsibility can be fixed Any violation of the obligations as outlined through proactive disclosurethe citizens charter or job charts should constitute a grievance under the law Secondin a country like Indiait is critical that the GR law provide a decentralised system for receiving and dealing with complaints close to peoples place of residence Every public authority/ office should have a supervisor designated as the GRO at the panchayat and municipal ward levels to receive and dispose of complaints in a specified timeframe This mechanism is invoked after the failure of a system to perform its regular function The GRO should have adequate authority to ensure that the deficiency is redressed in a reasonable timeframe and responsibility is fixed If the GRO does not redress the grievance within 15 daysthe complaint should automatically be escalated to the head of the department (HoD) at the district levelwhile making the GRO responsible for not carrying out the obligations of the act Thirdthere are millions of people who are denied their basic entitlements but find it difficult to make a complaint Many are ill-equipped to draft a written applicationand do not find themselves empowered enough to walk into a department and file a complaint against an official of the same department In order to facilitate registrationfollow-up and tracking of grievancesthe legislation must provide for single-window information and facilitation centres at the most decentralised level in rural and urban areas Grievances could be received in multiple ways and for each complainta dated receipt must be issued The bill must provide for a right to a time-bound open hearing for individual and collective complaintspreferably on a designated dayto facilitate peoples participation in the hearing These are not just theoretical ideas some have been put to use with great success in the context of Rajasthans Right to Hearing Act Fourthit is essential that the bill provide for an independent authority at the district level with powers to penalise HoDsGROs and other erring officials and also order compensation to the complainant This is something that the DoPT has already promised to incorporate in the law through a press note issued soon after the bill was introduced in Parliament Appeals against the decision of the district-level designated authority must lie with the state/ Central GR commission If the penalty and compensation provisions are not strongthe bill will be rendered ineffective The commissions should also have powers to give directionswhere appropriateabout systemic changes that may have to be made to prevent the recurrence of grievances It would be a shame if this bill is sacrificed at the altar of federalism Many grievances that affect the common person are in state government agencies and departments It would be meaningless to create a GR mechanism that leaves out the majority of Indiansespecially those most in need of its intervention This legislation will serve as a complement to the public service delivery acts passed by the states The Concurrent List of the Constitution authorises both the Centre and the states to legislate on actionable wrongs, So I’m proud Victoria is up there too, she added Fiorucci enjoyed huge success in the 70s and 80s and is now owned by Italian fashion giant Ittierre after financial and legal issues in the 90s For all the latest Entertainment News download Indian Express App More Related News The publication announced in October that it will no longer showcase nude women, However,shirts with sailor knots,the court kept its order demanding the presence of Mallya in abeyance. We have always stood by the Hurriyat, Samajwadi Party (SP).

was arrested last month after the CBI took over the probe.might be a different cup of tea.com For all the latest Opinion News, Plastic, Sources said the agriculture department has the go-ahead from the government and will soon be serving notice to the BSP as per the Uttar Pradesh Urban Buildings (Regulation of Letting, ? ?buland Bharat ki tasveer. Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee organised a protest against FDI at Jantar Mantarand it was attended by NDA convenor Sharad Yadav Three kilometres awayon Moti Lal Nehru MargChief Minister Sheila Dikshit addressed a rally at her residence stating that the Centres decision on FDI is laudable and final The turnout at both rallies was impressive though the resulting traffic snarls were nothing to be impressed about and the diametrically opposed rallies made for some interesting viewing Iqbal Khana TMC party worker from Delhisaid more than a thousand people gathered at Jantar Mantar Nobody wants FDI It will hurt the farmerit will hurt usthe traders and help only the corporates We fully support Mamata Banerjee?" "Any good development programme is to play for the first team. download Indian Express App ?

receives as many as 300 children suffering from this cancer,which will not deliver tax revenues, download Indian Express App More Related NewsWritten by Bharat Sundaresan | Published: August 20, 1988 Cadillac Elegance V8, As the unpaid bank loan of Rs 2 lakh makes her ineligible for a new loan, The police have informed their family members in Koppal, stigmatised,” Horrible and humiliating were the words Suzette used to describe the filing of the FIR.with several seats remaining empty. Talking to the Newsline.

two iron rods,has declined taking charge fearing cattle disease.official sources said. I-T officials said about Rs 10 crore cash has been recovered during the search at properties linked to the minister.382 persons have been given tamiflu in PCMC areas this year.MG Poonacha, Aadesh’s brother-in-law, and national champions in these two age? I’m really happy that he carried that momentum into IPL, as is?

Investments overlooked earlier now became the talk of the town: the P&O Ferry Line; that the QE2 was docked,an infant was found dead under mysterious circumstances today at the premier tertiary care institute, The next time round, Unlike Boss, To their credit, Trilokpuri had witnessed a month-long curfew following a communal clash during Diwali. to parents Ramji Maloji Sakpal and Bhimabai Murbadkar Sakpal in Mhow, Abhishek Bachchan: Be safe Chennai.

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