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Reducing Corruption in Service Delivery to Citizens . Subhash Bhatnagar Advisor eGovernment, ISGIA, World Bank, Washington DC (Adjunct Professor Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad) Presentation Structure.

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Reducing Corruption in Service Delivery to Citizens

Subhash Bhatnagar

Advisor eGovernment, ISGIA, World Bank, Washington DC

(Adjunct Professor Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad)

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Presentation Structure

  • Service Delivery and Administrative corruption

  • Bhoomi: Issue of Record of Rights,Tenancy and Crops (RTC) in Karnataka India

    • Is there an impact on corruption?

    • Processes reengineered to tackle corruption

  • ICT use in Property Registration-Why did it not impact corruption?

  • How did ICT use help in Bhoomi?

  • Why did Bhoomi succeed as an ICT project

  • Do poor people benefit from Bhoomi?

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Types of Corruption in Government to Citizen Contact

  • Administrative corruption

    • Service is denied unless bribe is paid

    • Service is delayed unless bribe is paid

  • Collusion (both parties gain at the expense of Government)

    • Favored allocation when mismatch between supply and demand

    • Lower valuation by Tax collection agencies

    • Waiving of penalties and fines

    • Tempering government records to provide unfair advantage

  • Extortion

    • Law enforcers, tax collectors make patently unreasonable demands to extort a bribe

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Land Related Corruption

  • Copy of RTC required for farm loans of Rs 40 billion yearly by 2500 bank branches

    • Service is denied /delayed unless bribe is paid

  • Mutation of Land

    • Service is denied /delayed unless bribe is paid

    • Tempering government records to provide unfair advantage

  • Crop insurance:In 200-2001 only 0.38 million farmers insured their crop, paid Rs. 112 million as premium and collected Rs 40 million in damages. In 2002-2003 one million farmers insured their crops, paid Rs 420 million as premium and collected Rs2960 million in damages. Falsified Claims Collusion (both parties gain at the expense of Government)

  • More than 70% disputes in courts are land based-need to retrieve old documents from revenue department : Service is denied /delayed unless bribe is paid.

  • Encroachment on public land: Collusion (both parties gain at the expense of Government) in falsifying records

  • Registration of property deeds: Extortion by making patently unreasonable stamp duty demands to extort a bribe

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Land Record Computerization Bhoomi, Karnataka, India

  • 20 million records of 6.7 million farmers spread over 9000 villages

  • Village Accountant responsible for issue of certificates and mutation

  • Certificate issue can take 3-30 days and a bribe of Rs 100-2000

  • Mutation can take up to 2 years (30 days)

  • Encroachment of public land

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Bhoomi: on-line Delivery of Certificates

  • 180 centers where operators issue certificates on-line in 15 minutes for a fee of Rs 15 (30cents)

  • Mutation request filed on line

  • Touch screen on pilot basis for easy access by citizens

  • Future plans to Web enable to provide access thru kiosks

  • Security thru bio-log in procedure

  • Incisive MIS reports for follow up on mutation

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Report Card on Bhoomi is GOOD

  • Survey: 180 users from 12 kiosks and 60 non users 4 taluks

  • Ease of Use: 78% of users who had used both systems found Bhoomi simpler; 66% used Bhoomi without help vs. 28% in manual

  • Complexity of Procedures: 80% did not have to meet any one other than at kiosk: In manual 19% met one officer and 61% met 2-4 officials

  • Errors in documents: Bhoomi 8% vs manual 64%

  • Rectification of errors: sought correction 93 % vs 49%, timely response 50% vs 4%

  • Cost of service: 84% one visit to Bhoomi center at Taluk HQ

  • Staff behavior: Bhoomi Good (84%) vs manual Average (63%)

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Other Indicators of Success

  • 18 million titles issued earning a fee of 270 million (51% loans; 14% verify mutation;16%courts)

  • Corruption: 66% paid bribes very often vs 3% in Bhoomi

  • Small sample study quoted reduction in corruption of Rs 700 million in bribes and Rs 66 million saving to farmers in wages.

  • 85% jump in the number of mutation requests- from an average of 0.55 million mutations per year to one million mutations in the previous two years of Bhoomi

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Features of Bhoomi to Curb Corruption

  • Delay or deny service

    • Removal of gate keeping role

    • First in first out handling enforced

    • Transaction in a more public place

    • Awareness that no bribes need to be paid

    • System of reporting down time of equipment

    • Physical supervision

    • Complaint handling system??

  • Improved accountability deters potential offenders

    • Tracking of all data base changes

    • Documentation of all objections

    • Ability of citizens to easily access data and verify records

    • Ability to back complaints with documentary evidence

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How Does ICT Use Help?

  • Introduces transparency in data, decisions/actions, rules, procedures and performance of Govt. agencies

  • Automates processes-less discretion, less delay

  • Entry point for simplification of rules and reengineering

  • Makes decisions traceable- tracks actions

  • Builds accountability- greater access to information through web publishing-role of civil society

  • Provides documentation to citizens for follow up

  • Introduces competition amongst delivery channels

  • Standardized documentation of comments/ objections leads to effective supervision- through comparative indicators

  • Centralizes and integrates data for better audit and analysis.

  • Enables unbiased sampling for audit purposes

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Report Card on CARD

  • Intermediaries continue to thrive and bribes are demanded and paid

  • Valuation model not transparent

  • Discretion on valuation not taken away

  • Citizen’s do not understand the level of discretion, registrar’s enjoy

  • Registrars continue to play a gate keeping role.

  • Weak complaint handling mechanism

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ICT Projects: Critical Success Factors

  • Strong Political and Administrative Leadership

    • Willing to take on 9000 VAs , workshops, permitted user fees

  • Project scope that was not ambitious but delivered significant value to customers

  • Clearly identified goals and benefits

    • RTC in 15 minutes and Mutation in 30 days

  • Significant Process Reengineering Required

    • FIFO, multiple channels for a task, bio log in, data transparency

  • In-source Analysis ; Outsource design, software development, data preparation, training, etc.

  • Detailed Project Management

  • Training Expenses should not be minimized

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Dealing With Resistance from VAs

  • Not every one is completely dishonest.

  • Were amenable to exploitation by powerful brokers-were forced into wrong doing such as altering records

  • Got an unambiguous signal from the political leadership that there is no way out

  • Were not strongly unionized and organized

  • Were by passed-were not critical to the success of the Bhoomi operation

  • Reforms were phased-RTC and then Mutation