While MeeSeva centres in the city are being flooded with Aadhaar issuance requests, the IT Department is unable to open more such centres in the city and urban areas.
High rentals and reluctance of government departments to allow the MeeSeva centres function in their respective buildings have forced the electronic service delivery (ESD) wing to opt for mobile transactions and new franchises.
The centres are already handling more than 150 government services and will have to make do with at least 50 more services in the coming days even as they struggle for space.
“Ideally, we should have a centre operating every 2-3 kilometres in the city. But, we are finding it difficult to get space. Many departments are not interested in earmarking space for our centres as it would mean loss of rental revenue for them,” explained K. Gopinatha, Director, ESD. Centres located in the government buildings do not pay rent.
About 50,000 citizens visit the 55-odd MeeSeva centres in the city (there are 275 such centres across the State) with transactions touching 13-15 lakh daily (1.5 crore across the State).
Faced with space crunch, the ESD wing has now started allowing mobile phone transactions.
A beginning has been made by roping in Airtel for bill payment and another deal with BSNL is in the offing at an extra fee of Rs. 5 for a bill payment.
“Since 60 per cent of our transactions by the citizens are for payment of utilities, we are gradually heading for the mobile phone payment mode. It will considerably reduce the rush at our offices,” Dr. Gopinatha pointed out.
New look soon
Meanwhile, the MeeSeva offices will be sporting a brand new look. Dual screen monitors, new furniture and flat screen television sets will be the attractions.
Candidates with better educational qualifications and communication skills will man the counters.
Dr. Gopinatha said the high-end equipment is being installed at a cost of Rs. 20 crore to enable quicker transactions.