The Rajasthan Government’s specialised agency for computers, RajCOMP, signed a memorandum of understanding with One World Foundation-India for a large scale roll-out of e-SANCHAR, an innovative e-governance application, for the benefit of citizens under various beneficiary programmes here over the week-end.

The MoU was signed in the presence of Union Minister of State for Science and Technology Prithviraj Chavan, who was here to attend the 13th National Conference on e-Governance. Rajasthan Information Technology and Communication Minister Jitendra Singh and a battery of senior officers of the Union and State Governments were also present.

One World Foundation-India Director Naimur Rahman and RajCOMP Managing Director Ashwini Kumar signed the MoU on behalf of their respective institutions.

The ambitious e-SANCHAR (e-Speech Application through Network for Automated Communication Help and Response) project, initiated by the State Government’s Department of IT and Communication, integrates mobile and telephony network with IT to enable real time information from text to voice mode to citizens under various programmes extending the Government’s support and assistance.

Mr. Rahman said after signing the MoU that the e-SANCHAR application integrates data migration, text to speech in Hindi, automatic dialling and communication of citizen-centric Government advice and information in the form of fixed as well as variable voice messages to the targeted beneficiaries.

Delivered over telephony platform, the e-SANCHAR application has wider penetration in rural areas, where the medium of voice in Hindi and the local dialect addresses the constraints of illiteracy.

The e-SANCHAR project brings value to a wide variety of the State Government’s welfare and beneficiary programmes by facilitating a reality check, besides doing away with intermediaries between the Government and the target groups. Mr. Rahman pointed out that it could also be used as a very effective tool for spreading social messages far and wide.

As part of the MoU, One World will work with RajCOMP to help bring the real benefits of social sector programmes to the poor segments of society, while the RajCOMP is considering scale-up of the innovative application and have it replicated to implement it in all the development programmes and initiatives for citizens in the rural areas of the desert State.

Mr. Rahman said the scaled-up e-SANCHAR implementation would be under the banner of the Department of IT and RajCOMP, while the One World would anchor the implementation and delivery.

The two institutions will also collaboratively market e-SANCHAR effectively in other State Government departments. RajCOMP will own all the trademark, copyright and intellectual property right related to e-SANCHAR. The service will be offered with a “not-for-profit” approach.

One World has been working in Rajasthan for several years in the fields of sustainable development, telephone helplines and health care by using IT for ensuring an enhanced transparency in various sectors on the ground.