Andhra Pradesh: Ministers, bureaucrat's find e-file tough

Many take help of assistants or other staff.

Hyderabad: Old habits die hard. While some ministers and officers have warmed up to the government’s e-file system, others are struggling. The AP government recently introduced e-file system and directed all departments not to entertain physical files. Chief Minister’s office and Chief Secretary’s office are rejecting physical files. State government has directed all secretaries to send files through e-file system only.

A few IAS officers like Principal Finance Secretary P.V. Ramesh, Finance Secretary M. Ravichandra, Principal Secretary Medical and Health department Poonam Malakondaiah and others are clearing e-files on their own. Junior IAS officers are also clearing e- files on their own. However, some IAS officers have learned how to open the e-file but they are not able to type their comments in the file. Ministers are also not clearing the e-files on their own.

Majority of ministers and IAS officers are clearing e-files with the help of their peshi staff and IT department staff. The staff will open the e-file and after reading the file IAS officers will dictate their comments or opinion and the staff will type it in the e-file. Those who do not have computer knowledge are facing problem in clearing the e files.

Ministers are also depending on their personal assistants, private secretaries or Officer on Special duty (OSD) in clearing e-files. Some Ministers like Yanamala Ramakrishnudu, K. Atchennaidu and others have learnt to open the files. But to write their opinions in the file they are depending on their staff. An IAS officer said that after introducing the e-file system the files are moving very quickly.

At present 33 departments are moving about 35,305 e-files. Revenue Department has most e- files at 4,498 followed by Finance Department at 3,831 and Forest Department at 3,271 e-files. In the physical file system, putting up the file and to getting final clearance took at least one week or 10 days. But in the e- file system just in one day everything is being completed.

The main problem being faced by the officers is from network service. Opening a file sometimes takes more than five minutes due to slow network speed. State government has decided to improve the network service as all offices in the secretariat are sending files through e-file system.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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