In order to improve the delivery of services to citizens by improving administrative efficiency, the Punjab government has constituted three task forces under second Punjab Governance Reforms Commission, in addition to the existing five. The three new task would look at civil and criminal justice reforms in government institutions; policy procedures resolution and grievances of non-resident Indians; and health and medical education.
The task forces would give suggestions and recommendations to the state government to achieve good governance based on high ethical standards and to improve the welfare of the disadvantaged, marginalised and deprived sections of the state.
According to an official spokesperson, the second commission would also cover three new citizen-centric basic services for sectors not covered in the first commission. The government has also set up an empowered committee under the chairmanship of the chief secretary to monitor and steer various reforms initiatives in various departments.
The task groups would make detailed recommendations indicating changes required in the sectors related to procedures, rules and regulations, especially modalities on bringing about the suggested changes and on the resources required for implementation.
The recommendation of the task group would be approved by the commission, which might also appoint staff, experts, consultants and research assistants to assist it.
Moreover, to ensure speedy implementation of its recommendations, the commission would submit periodic reports and have consultations with the empowered committee and submit action taken reports to the government within a stipulated time.
The five-year tenure of the second Punjab Governance Reforms Commission, constituted by the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party government, which assumed power for the second successive term in 2012, started with effect from March 21.
The commission was mandated to suggest changes in the process, procedures, rules and regulations, and design of public services; and ensure dignified access to these services by the disadvantaged, marginalised and deprived sections of society, including women.
The first commission had submitted five reports focused primarily on citizen-centric services provided by various departments.
Many of the recommendations have been implemented. According to an official spokesman, the second commission would monitor and evaluate the implementation of such reform initiatives taken up on its recommendations or otherwise make suggestions to the government on how to make mid-course corrections.
The reforms would focus on social, civic and physical infrastructure. Education, public health, social security, environment and urban development would be covered.
Institutional and structural reforms would include issues of resource efficiency and performance evaluation. In order to optimise efficiency of government departments, internal systems and processes including decision-making, information and feedback systems would be reviewed.