Using Public Services Guarantee Act’s Section 4, 102 more services of several departments have been brought under the purview of the legislation which sets the maximum time limit for the services to be provided to the common man.
The services brought under PSGA included two each of Revenue department and Science and Technology Department; one each of Agriculture Production Department and Rural Development and Panchayati Raj; three each of Health and Medical Education Department and Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs; 5 of School Education Department, Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) of Jammu and ULBs of Kashmir; six each of Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC), Housing and Urban Development Department (HUDD) and Mission Youth Scheme and Scholarship Scheme of Finance Department; eight of Tourism Department; ten services of Social Welfare Department and forty-four services of Transport Department.
The Act is a pioneering step towards expediting the delivery of services to the people of the J&K and to fight the menace of corruption.
The public service can be defined as a service which the common citizen is supposed to get from the government. In the Right to Service, the term “service” has been defined as any service notified by the state government under the respective law. The term “right to service” denotes the right of a citizen to obtain the service under the stipulated time frame under the law. Section 2 (g) of the J&k Public Service Guarantee Act defines service as “service” means any service notified under section 4.
Under section 5 (2) of the Act, any eligible person can file an application with the designated officer for providing the notified service within the stipulated time. The designated officer shall be within the specified time limit as provided in SRO 224 of 2011.
The inclusion of more services is surely a welcome step. This in turn would reduce the chances of corruption to a greater extent and make administration more responsive. The legislation nurtures good governance and provides for public service to every eligible person within the specified time limit in a transparent manner. An eligible person can demand performance of duties and functions in accordance with the Act. He is empowered under the Act to hold the concerned designated officer accountable for any service deficiency. He is also empowered to seek compensation with respect to non-providing service or deficiency in service. The decision by the government is reflective of the fact that, in this Digital India age, there is no scope for services delay or denials.