Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 03 March 2021 4.36 AM IST

Rush of visitors at government offices can be avoided if staff don’t sit on files


Nobody will go to any government office to kill time. There will be prompt reasons behind any visit.

In most cases they go to enquire about the progress of their application or complaint.
The impression in the minds of the people is that the files will not move if the applicant won’t go behind it was created by the government offices themselves.

Therefore attempt to keep away visitors in government officers doesn’t conform to democratic principles.
Why we are talking about this now is that we had come to notice the hardships faced by visitors at Secretariat.

Last March, at the beginning of the Covid outbreak, a ban or rather restrictions on visitors was imposed on the Secretariat like in other places.
Restrictions began to loosen as unlock phase began.
Holidays of staff have also been cancelled and slowly everything is returning to normal. Visitors have started thronging government offices.
As usual, the backlog of files will be there in most of the offices
Till now they had pointed out Covid crisis as an excuse.

Due to security reasons also, entering the Secretariat had been difficult for the people. Now, beefing it up has again made the restrictions intolerable for the common people.

A large contingent of security forces has been deployed around the area to stop and send back the visitors.

The visitors have to face the security personnel’s rolling of eyes and questioning before entering the Secretariat.
To visit a section, one has to get the section staff’s permission.

Hundreds of visitors come to the Secretariat every day, even from far-flung places like Kasargod.

Most of the people come to submit petitions and see if any decision has been taken on the earlier application.

The trouble that the new restrictions on the Secretariat gives to ordinary visitors are no little.
It is a pity that no action is taken on this despite complaints.
It is true that visitors should be avoided in the current circumstances but shouldn’t somebody own the responsibility to give satisfactory explanation to the visitors.

It is ridiculous that those people who have acquaintance inside the Secretariat only can have easy access to sections.

Amid the restrictions imposed, the staff should also address the grievances of the visitors.

In addition to controlling visitors, the needs of the investigators should be addressed and remedial action should be taken.

In a democratic system, it is unfair to drive away citizens who come to make enquiries.

Not only in Secretariat, but also in other government and local body offices, the situation is no different.

With Assembly election to happen in a few months, more people are likely to visit government offices to get things done before the election.
E-governance system started in many a government office to provide a hassle-free service to citizens are also not functioning properly or in a full-fledged manner.

Quack settlement of files are not seen in most of the government offices.

On the day the LDF government came to power, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had reminded the Secretariat staff about this -
Don’t overlook the human life behind each file.

But unfortunately, no much change has happened to the situation of files not only in Secretariat but also in other offices.
Most of the visitors reaching government offices are either snubbed or neglected.

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