Kerala’s e-literacy centres turn service centres

November 18th, 2010 - 10:05 pm ICT by IANS  

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 18 (IANS) Kerala’s Akshaya centres, which began as facilitators for e-literacy programmes, were Thursday legally notified as service centres - a first for any state in India.

The announcement was made by Ajay Kumar, principal secretary of IT, while inaugurating the Akshaya founding day at a function held in Technopark.

“Today Akshaya has grown from being a facilitator for e-literacy programme to a facilitator of government to citizen (G2C) services. This is a very big responsibility shouldered by the 2000-odd entrepreneurs across the state,” he said.

The growth of Akshaya in the past eight years has triggered Kerala government to recognise the support they are providing.

Originating as an initiative to address the backwardness of Malappuram district, Akshaya was conceived by the Kerala State Information Technology Mission to bring the benefits of this technology to the entire population of the State.

Over the years, over 2,000 centres were opened across the state with at least two centres (e-kendra) in every village panchayat.

Each e-kendra, set up within two to three km of every household, meets the requirements of around 1,000-3,000 families to make available the power of networking and connectivity to common man.

Apart from e-literacy educational programmes, with classes on how to handle a computer, the centres also offer the e-payment platform, covering utility bills like electricity, water, telephone bills and even university fees, besides booking railway tickets and even filing of sales tax returns by traders.

Korath V. Mathew, director of Akshaya, said in the past eight years Akshaya has grown in network presence, competence, credibility, and reliability.

“Our entrepreneurs are task oriented, extremely flexible and scalable while operating within the limits of government rules. We commit to deliver services closer to the hearts of the citizens and strive to bring efficiency and transparency in the government service delivery,” he said.

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