Himachal Pradesh, the hilly state of Northern India, known for its beauty and tourism, is divided into 12 districts. It has been ranked fourth in the list of the highest per capita incomes of Indian states. The economy of the state is highly dependent on three sources: hydroelectric power, tourism and agriculture. As per the advanced estimates and on the basis of economic conditions up to December 2014, the likely growth rate for 2014-15 will be around 6.5 per cent. The state of Himachal won a total of 10 SKOCH Order-of-Merit, out of which, nine were bagged in the e-Governance category and one in Education. The state ranks 3rd in e-Governance and 7th in Education in the Awards tally.
Beginning with e-Governance, Himachal Deputy Commissioner Office, District Hamirpur, won the Order-of-Merit for the Hot Dak Tracking System; the State Election Commission and NIC Himachal Pradesh for the Electoral Rolls Management System (Local Body and Panchayati Raj Elections); Department of Prisons and Correctional Administration, for JailVaarta – Video Conferencing of Prisoners With Relatives; Department of Information Technology for End-to-End Aadhaar Implementation; the Department of Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, for Transparency Portal under ePDS Project; the Department of Information Technology, again for the Lok Mitra Kendra (LMK) Project; the Irrigation and Public Health Department, for WorkMIS; HP Tourism Development Corporation and NIC Himachal Pradesh for Online Integrated Hotels Reservation System and the Planning Department for Schemes Monitoring Information System (SMIS).
Taking a few examples, the system for monitoring of high priority references/dak, the HDTS is implemented by the DC office of Hamirpur. It is a useful application for tracking of important and high priority references across the office. The references may be court orders, inquiries, RTI applications, complaints, compliance reports or any other important communications. The key advantage of this application is to assist the officers/officials in disposing-off references in time. This initiative has benefitted all stakeholders, viz., departments, offices, branches as well as the general public. This has not only brought a quantitative change in the disposal of the references but also brought qualitative change in the delivery system.
The Swayam Sidham Project, done by the Education Department and NIC, Himachal Pradesh, aims at providing an online interface to teachers and students in order to train them in enhancing the quality of education in Classes 9th to 12th by making available all kinds of resources on the Swayamsidham portal and enriching this content by participative contribution. This project has been implemented in 628 ICT schools of Himachal Pradesh, covering teachers (Resources Persons: 814, Others: 5024) and students (Users: 3,247 Queries: 418) as of June 2015.
The economy of Himachal Pradesh is predominantly dependent upon agriculture and in the absence of a strong industrial base, any fluctuations in the agricultural or horticultural production cause some changes in economic growth also. In the coming months, the e-PDS Project is stated to be completed during 2015-16 itself. The implementation of Solid and Liquid Waste Management in the 477 Gram Panchayats during 2015-16 is another big achievement in the wings. Digitisation of Cadastral Maps (Musavi) will be completed in the remaining eight districts soon.
The social indicators of Himachal Pradesh have improved over the years. This has been recognised by the World Bank in its recent Report; ‘Scaling the Heights’, which says that Himachal Pradesh has successfully reduced the incidence of poverty regardless of gender and caste, both in the rural and urban areas. The report has highlighted that the poverty level in Himachal Pradesh has declined from 36.8 per cent in 1993 to 8.5 per cent in 2011, which is four fold decline. This is better than any other State in the country and foretells of indeed greater things to come with better transformative governance.
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