Modernisation of Post Offices
The Department of Posts has decided to improve the Look and Feel of its post offices through Project Arrow. The project has been launched with the objective of modernising departmental post offices across the country in a phased manner with an aim to make visible, tangible and noteworthy difference in post office operations. It aims at comprehensive improvement of the core operations of the post office as well as the ambience in which postal transactions are undertaken.
The IT Modernization Project Phase II of India Post under XIth plan envisages computerization of all the non-computerized Post Offices in the country (Departmental single handed Post Offices) and all Extra departmental Post Offices phased over the financial years 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13.
The number of Post Offices modernized in 2008-09 and 2009-10 are:
2008-09 – 45 post offices were computerized, computer hardware was upgraded in 1847 post offices and 500 post offices were modernized under Project Arrow.
2009-10 – 2920 post offices were computerized, computer hardware was upgraded in 92 post offices and 500 post offices were modernized under Project Arrow.
Total investment to be made on modernization in 2010-2011 and 2011-12 are:
2010-11- Rs. 209.76 crores has been allocated for computerization of post offices at the RE stage and `84 crores has been allocated for modernization of post offices under Project Arrow.
2011-12 – Rs. 626.41 crores has been earmarked for computerisation of post offices and Rs. 9 lakh for carrying out internal review of selected post offices already covered under Project Arrow.
The Department has diversified its activities to utilise its network by introducing services like selling of passport forms in identified post offices, accepting of utilities bills in the post offices, providing railway reservation facilities etc.
The Department has also tied-up with various Government departments to provide social security services especially in rural areas and with financial institutions to sell their product through post offices like :
(i) National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS)-for disbursement of wages to NREGS beneficiaries through Post Office Savings Bank accounts.
(ii) Collection of Rural Price Index Data
(iii) Payment of Old age pension- through Post Office Savings accounts in Bihar, Chattisgarh, Delhi, Jharkhand, M.P., Maharashtra, North-East and Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and through money order in Karnataka, Kerala, M.P., Maharashtra, N.E., Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu , Uttarakhand, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.
(iv) Sale of gold coins by tying-up with Reliance Money Limited.
(v) On Line Acceptance of RTI Applications.
(vi) Provision of New Pension Scheme through Post Offices.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Communications & Information Technology, Shri Sachin Pilot in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.