Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Rajasthan Became the Only State in India to Implement Public Service Guarantee Act

The Rajasthan government implemented the Public Service Guarantee Act in the state on 14 November 2011. It came into force with an aim to provide public services in a time-bound manner. Rajasthan became the only state in India where the state government made a provision of the penalty imposed for failing to provide a service or for a delay. The penalty would be recovered from the salary of the concerned designated officer.

The Act covered 108 services of 15 major government departments, envisages a time-bound performance of duties by government officials and it possessed a provision of cash penalty for the offenders. The Public Service Guarantee Act included services pertaining to departments of Police, Finance, Energy, Medical, Traffic, Public Health Engineering, Food, Housing, Water Resources and Social Justice among others.

Provisions of Rajasthan Government Public Service Guarantee Act

•    As per the provisions of penalty, the competent appellate officer could impose a penalty which was set not be less than Rs 500 and not more than Rs 5,000. The appellate officer could also impose a penalty of Rs 250 per day on undue delay.

•    The stipulated time for clearance of appeals would vary from an hour in some cases to 24 hours; like in the case of appeals made with regard to post-mortem reports and goes up to 45 days; depending upon the service desired.

•    The time would be calculated from the day of the appeal submission.

•    The designated officer of the department may reject an application for a notified service, having recorded the reason in writing and informing the applicant.

•    A person whose application for a specific service or work is rejected for any reason would be entitled to approach the first appeal officer and thereafter the second appellate officer; with his grievances under the Act.

•    The officials are accountable to ensure that either the desired service is provided or explain the limitations for not providing it.