Due to the rapid rise of the internet and digitization, Governments all over the world are initiating steps to involve IT in all governmental processes. This is the concept of e-government. This is to ensure that the Govt. administration becomes a swifter and more transparent process as ideated by the Government of India under the National e-Governance Plan. It also helps saves huge costs.
E-Governance can be defined as the application of communication and information technology for providing government services, exchange of information, transactions, integration of previously existing services and information portals.
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It makes the whole administrative process convenient, efficient, transparent, fully accountable and responsible. As a fast-growing economy and an emerging world leader, E-Governance is a must in a country like India, both in Government and corporate sector.
- Speed: Technology makes communication swifter. Internet, smartphones have enables instant transmission of high volumes of data all over the world.
- Saving Costs: A lot of Government expenditure goes towards the cost of buying stationery for official purposes. Letters and written records consume a lot of stationery. However, replacing them with smartphones and the internet can saves crores of money in expenses every year.
- Transparency: The use of e-governance helps make all functions of the business transparent. All Governmental information can be uploaded onto the internet. The citizens access specifically access whichever information they want, whenever they want it, at their convinience.
However, for this to work the Government has to ensure that all data as to be made public and uploaded to the Government information forums on the internet.
- Accountability: Transparency directly links to accountability. Once the functions of the government are available, we can hold them accountable for their actions.
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- Loss of Interpersonal Communication: The main disadvantage of e-governance is the loss of interpersonal communication. Interpersonal communication is an aspect of communication that many people consider vital.
- High Setup Cost and Technical Difficulties: Technology has its disadvantages as well. Specifically, the setup cost is very high and the machines have to be regularly maintained. Often, computers and internet can also break down and put a dent in governmental work and services.
- Illiteracy: A large number of people in India are tech-illiterate and do not know how to operate computers and smartphones. E-governance is very difficult for them to access and understand.
- Cybercrime/Leakage of Personal Information: There is always the risk of private data of citizens stored in government serves being stolen. Cybercrime is a serious issue, a breach of data can make the public lose confidence in the Government’s ability to govern the people.