Bengal Plans Linux-based G2G Portal

Kolkata: | Updated: Jan 21 2003, 05:30am hrs
The West Bengal government is planning to have a Linux-based G2G (government-to-government) portal following the success of its recently launched G2C (government-to-citizen) portal.

The state government wants to create a cost-effective portal where the database and other important applications will be ported on Linux. Keeping in mind the financial constraints of the state government we are looking for a technology which will be cost-effective. Linux is an open source code operating system (OS) with low ownership cost, so we would prefer Linux to other operating systems, said West Bengal department of information technology secretary DK Patra.

The G2G portal will meet the information needs of various government departments required during the process of formation of plans and initiatives, said Mr Patra.

As the administrative functions of all the departments are interlinked, a government department needs various information from other departments. If the information is available on the portal in a consolidated form, decision-making becomes quick and all encompassing, said Mr Patra.

The portal will have essential information on the 52 departments of the Bengal government, which can be accessed despite the various levels of security it will have.

The information on the portal will be based on the ongoing study being undertaken by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS). The TCS system study has been completed in seven departments. The study will understand the nature of work processes and information generated in each of the departments.

It will help in creating an information flow architecture for the purpose of computerisation of the departments.

In the first phase the portal will include the essential information regarding important departments, he said.

Since all the district headquarters and some sub-divisional towns are already connected, we will be creating a dial-up connectivity at the panchayat level through which the portal could be accessed from anywhere in the state, said Mr Patra.

Unlike the G2C portal which has been developed by TCS, the G2G portal will have no revenue potential. That may be one of the reasons why the Bengal government is looking for a cost-effective solution with minimum implementation cost.

The state IT department will approach major solution vendors including the National Informatics Centre (NIC). NIC, which has undertaken most of the computerisation work in the government departments, especially in the areas of finance, land reform and sales tax, has the necessary knowledge base to implement the essentials of e-governance project, according to NIC senior technical director Subir Roy.