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A Model Panchayat Citizens Charter

Topics Covered: Citizens Charter.

A Model Panchayat Citizens Charter:


Context:

A Model Panchayat Citizens Charter/ framework for delivery of the services across the 29 sectors, aligning actions with localised Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), was released recently.

  • It has been prepared by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj (MoPR) in collaboration with National Institute of Rural Development & Panchayati Raj (NIRDPR).

Significance:

The Citizen Charter would ensure transparent and effective delivery of public services for sustainable development and enhanced citizen service experiences; deepening inclusive and accountable Local Self Governments by incorporating diverse views while designing and delivering services.

Need for:

  • Panchayats constitute the third tier of government in the rural areas and represent the first level of Government interaction for over 60 per cent of the Indian populace.
  • Panchayats are responsible for delivery of basic services as enshrined under article 243G of the Constitution of India, specifically in the areas of Health & Sanitation, Education, Nutrition, Drinking Water.

About Citizens’ Charters:

  • Citizens’ Charters initiative is a response to the quest for solving the problems which a citizen encounters, day in and day out, while dealing with the organisations providing public services.
  • The concept of Citizens’ Charter enshrines the trust between the service provider and its users.
  • The concept was first articulated and implemented in the United Kingdom in 1991.

Six principles of the Citizens Charter movement as originally framed, were:

(i) Quality: Improving the quality of services.

(ii) Choice : Wherever possible.

(iii) Standards :Specify what to expect and how to act if standards are not met.

(iv) Value: For the taxpayers money.

(v) Accountability : Individuals and Organisations.

(vi) Transparency.

In India:

The concept of citizen’s charter was first adopted at a ‘Conference of Chief Ministers of various States and Union Territories’ held in May 1997 in the national capital.

Sources: PIB.