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Updated: February 16, 2014 20:36 IST

Timely help for students

K. C. Deepika
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A total of 41 Sakala services are covered in the Higher Education Department, including 27 in university education

Sakala, a flagship initiative of the State Government aimed at providing timely services to citizens (under the Karnataka Guarantee of Services to Citizens Act 2011), has been in the news ever since its implementation. As 2013 came to a close, the number of applications received under Sakala reached four crore. As on December 2013, citizens were utilising a total of 447 services under 46 departments and the various departments are preparing to bring in another 250 services under Sakala.

Online, as many as 69 services are available, 41 of which are under the Higher Education Department. Looking at the data available as on December 30, 2013, a total of 1.91 lakh applications were received by the Higher Education Department, and 1.82 lakh were disposed of. The detailed department-wise breakup of 31,568 calls logged by the call centre showed that the Education Department was in the seventh place with 736 calls.

Among the 41 services that are covered under Sakala in the Higher Education Department, 27 are in university education, and seven each in technical education and collegiate education.

Mangalore University was among the first State universities to roll out Sakala, in August 2013. Vice-Chancellor T.C. Shivashankara Murthy said there was no pendency of cases in the five-and-a-half months since the implementation of the scheme. “Every day, we are receiving applications for a range of services, including for duplicate marks cards, eligibility certificates, degree certificates and others,” he said.

‘Beneficial’

Bangalore University too announced last year that its students can get the benefits of the scheme soon. Vice-Chancellor B. Thimme Gowda said the proposal will be presented in the next meeting of the Syndicate later this month or in early March. Asked about the need of the scheme though varsities are bound by academic calendars, Prof. Gowda said, “It is beneficial for the university as well as the students. Some employees are lethargic; applications for marks cards, etc., are delayed because of some case workers. Some sort of enforcement is needed in the system which Sakala can provide.”

K.S. Rangappa, Vice-Chancellor, University of Mysore, also said the aim was to implement the initiative in the coming academic year. Attributing a lack of computer literacy among the staff as an obstacle in the early implementation of the scheme, Prof. Rangappa said its introduction would bring in a lot of transparency in the system.

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