Govt Plans To Use FB, Twitter To Gauge Public Opinion |

Govt Plans To Use FB, Twitter To Gauge Public Opinion

Also plans to bring about more transparency in governance in the electronic way.


The popularity of social networking services such as Facebook and Twitter is at an all-time high, with almost everyone who is online, having a presence in one way or the other. To take advantage of this scenario, the Indian government is creating a framework for "Citizen Engagement" to use the social media to gain an insight into public opinion.

The Department of Information Technology, under the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, is creating such a framework according to Department of IT, Additional Secretary, Shankar Aggarwal. Aggarwal said, "Social media like Facebook, Twitter has become a very powerful media..but government has been unable to make user of it as we do not have any framework. Therefore government officials are not sure whether to make user of social media if yes then what should be the 'dos and don'ts' for the same".

He stressed on the importance and the benefit of government consultation with the general public about implement of schemes, programs, or projects. The approval of various ministries including Home, and Information and Broadcasting will be required prior to implementing this framework.

It was also announced that the government is planning to bring transparency into its functioning by moving government data created by public money, except sensitive data, into the public domain for anyone to access. People will be able to find out details about things such as the amount of money was spent in NREGA scheme or even the number of students who were awarded scholarships. This data can be used by public or civil societies for value addition, transparency, and accountability. The department of Science and Technology has been given the mandate to put all this data into public domain.

Aggarwal also announced that the Electronic Services Delivery Bill will be tabled in the next session of the parliament for approval. The bill aims to make sure that all government departments in Centre and states will have to provide public services in electronic mode only. Aggarwal said, "It is whims and wishes of the department to deliver public services in electronic mode. If we make it mandatory then all government departments and services will be duty bound to provide services in e-mode in next 5 years".

TAGS: Internet, Facebook, Twitter, Jayesh