Nepal | July 10, 2020

Mismanagement plagues transport department

Mausam Shah Nepali
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A smart license with a blot out image issued by the DoTM today. Photo: Mausam Shah Nepali

Kathmandu, January 24

At a time when the Department of Transport Management is under scrutiny following reports of it using substandard material to print smart driving licences, the office yet again issued a card with a blurred image of the holder today.

Kiran Lama of Nuwakot had reached the DoTM office in Sano Bharyang of Swoyambu this afternoon to receive his licence. But all Lama got was a card with his blot-out image. However, authorities were quick to point fingers at each other rather than initiating action on the issue.

DoTM Director General Udhav Dhakal said that if there had been a mistake, the office would re-print a proper licence without additional charges.

In another faux pas by the department, it sent text messages to service seekers asking them to receive their licences, saying their cards were ready. But when the service seekers reached the offices, employees informed them that their cards were yet to be printed.

“When I reached DoTM, employees said that my card was not printed yet,” Anil Maharjan, a service seeker said.

Likewise, Sandesh Dhakal, who also queued for hours, said, “Although the government has made efforts to digitise the system, service delivery and work speed resemble that of postal age.” Dhakal said, “If they can, they should deliver licences at applicants’ doorsteps.”

On the other hand, a proper licence cross-check mechanism is yet to be ensured. With only one smart card reading machine at the traffic police headquarters, verification of licences comes as a daunting task.

According to DoTM, it has issued over 800,000 licences and preparations are on to print additional 400,000 licences.

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A version of this article appears in print on January 25, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.


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