Local levels urged to use mobile app to inform people on COVID

Citizens can also use the app to pay fees for services they got from local level


The Department of Information Technology today called on local levels to disseminate notice and information on COVID-19 pandemic through a mobile application it had introduced in 2018.

According to the DoIT under the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, mobile app can be issued to issue alert messages against the pandemic, raise public awareness against the disease for behavioural change and disseminate information about the activities being undertaken by the local levels.

“Citizens can also use the app to make payment of fees or charge for services they receive from the concerned local governments,” said DoIT Director General Prem Sharan Shrestha in a press release.

In the context of the prohibitory orders issued by various local administrations and the need for maintaining physical distancing amid the spread of coronavirus, the government has encouraged the local levels for maximum utilisation of the app.

Initially, the app was developed to disseminate all information about local governments and their services to the people, while empowering the citizens at grassroots level and increasing their access to their elected representatives. Citizens may also air their grievances directly to the concerned local level through the app.

Key features of the app include brief introduction and statistics of the local levels, GIS maps, contact number of people’s representatives and employees with photo, laws and rules, budget and programme, emergency phone number and projects under construction.

The app is linked to the official website of the local levels and any information or data uploaded and updated in the website can be received by the smartphone users immediately.

The app also provides information about the time to be taken for delivering services, responsible officers, service charge, documents required, procedures and model forms, among others. The users can receive, read and download data or information about various programmes and projects of the local level.

It also provides information about hospitals, educational institutions, tourist hubs, religious and cultural sites, and hotels through interactive maps. The local units may use the app to conduct opinion polls to sample public attitudes on any issue.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on September 7, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.