With the Anna Hazare’s Lokpal Movement gathering steam amongst the Citizens of India, it sent a shock down the spine of State Governments who have neglected her citizens in providing basic services even 64 years after independence. This is when the Government of Karnataka embarked upon the idea of putting together a “Karnataka Guarantee of Services to Citizens Act, 2011” which comes into force on a pilot basis from March-1-2012. The Government has decided to name this Service as Sakala [meaning in time]
In short, the Karnataka Guarantee of Services to Citizens Act, 2011 ensures that Citizens are provided basic services from the Government like Driving License, Birth Certificates, Land Records, etc within a stipulated time and officers are made accountable to ensure proper delivery. This is not a free service and citizens are required to pay the required fees to obtain the same, but you are Guaranteed to get the Service otherwise the Government will Pay a fine to the Citizen and also take to task the erring official.
Hierarchy of Officers in Providing Services to the Citizens
- Designated Officer – Citizen Approaches the Designated Officer with this Service Request and the Officer has a stipulated time within which he must respond to the Citizen.
- Competent Officer – On top of the Designated Officer, sites the Competent Officer who shall be empowered to impose cost on the public servant defaulting or delaying the delivery of service in accordance with this Act
- Appellate Authority – Officer with the power to hear appeal against the orders passed by any competent officer under this Act. The Government is trying its best to help her citizens, so we request you all to be patient until the Officers and Processes streamline and don’t be very rigid about the deadlines as it will take a while for it to stabilize and co-operate until then.
We will explain each and every service that a citizen or resident of Karnataka is entitle to in the next few articles. You can e-mail your thoughts and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.