Officials in Rajasthan Government henceforth will have to perform in a time-bound manner in providing services to the public or they may be liable to a cash penalty of Rs 250 for each day of delay, subject to a minimum and maximum limit of Rs 500 and Rs 5,000.
The penalty clause, for laxity/delay without sufficient and reasonable cause, has been made in the Rajasthan Guaranteed Delivery of Public Service Bill 2011 which was passed by the State Legislative Assembly last evening by a voice vote.
As per the provision of penalty, the competent appellate officer may impose a lump sum penalty which shall not less than Rs 500 and more than Rs 5,000, or the appellate officer may impose penalty of Rs 250 per day of delay that should not be more than Rs 5,000 in a case.
The penalty so levied shall be recovered from the salary of the punished officer/official. However, the aggrieved officer will have right to move for revision against the penalty before an officer designated by the government.
Likewise, the applicant whose application for particular service/work is rejected by the the officials for some reasons will also have an opportunity to go for an appeal.
As many as 53 services pertaining to 15 government departments have presently been covered under the Act and Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has already announced his government's intention to bring more services and departments under the purview of the law.
Moving the Bill in the House yesterday on behalf of the Chief Minister, Home and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Kumar Dhariwal said, "The objective of the Bill is to ensure a transparent and responsive administration and time-bound delivery of services to the citizens."
"In furtherance of the above commitment, it is proposed that citizens should be provided with a statutory right to obtain specific public services within a stipulated time and if the public authorities fail to provide such services within the stipulated period they should be made liable to pay penalty," he said.
With this, Rajasthan has become the first Congress-ruled state in the country to pass such a law. Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Punjab are the other states which have passed such a law.