The government on Monday approved a bill that aims to provide access to all central and state government services such as passport, ration card and driving licences electronically, especially the Internet, within eight years.
"The Electronic Delivery of Services Bill has been cleared," Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said after the Union Cabinet meeting in New Delhi.
Earlier in the day, IT and Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal had said that the bill will mandate government organisations to start providing all services for citizen within eight years time through electronic medium.
"The (central and state) governments will notify the service that they will provide electronically in next 5 years. They will be given extra three years after five years to ensure all services all provided electronically," Sibal said.
He added that electronic delivery of services will help rein in corruption. "This will bring more transparency in the system."
According to officials, the ESD bill was brought before the Cabinet to bring it in sync with Citizens Charter Bill or The Right of Citizens for Time-Bound Delivery of Goods and Services and Redressal of their Grievances Bill, 2011, which was approved by Union Cabinet on March 7.
The Citizens Charter Bill envisages penalty of up to Rs50,000 against a government official failing to perform his or her duties.