The National e-Governance Plan (NeGP)
The CSC scheme is a result of the National e-Governance Plan with the vision of providing all government services in an integrated manner to citizens at their doorstep, at an affordable cost. The NeGP initiative consists of 27 Central, State and Integrated Mission Mode Projects (MMPs) along with 8 other support components for rapid introduction of e-governance in the country.
The NeGP has built a three pillar model for delivery of "Web-enabled Anytime, Anywhere Access" to information and services in rural India. These are:
- Connectivity: State Wide Area Networks (SWAN)
- National Data Bank/ State Data Centres (SDCs)
- Common Services Centres (CSCs)
The Common Services Centers Scheme (CSC)
Common Services Centers are the front-end delivery points for Government, Private and Social sector services to rural citizens of India residing in remote areas.
An ICT enabled CSC can:
- Provide citizen centric services (of the state and central governments) conveniently and efficiently across rural India;
- Enhance Accountability, Transparency and Responsiveness of the Government to its citizen′s needs;
- Provide efficient and cost effective methods of service delivery to departments and agencies;
- Allow private sector to collaborate with the Government;
- Train village level entrepreneurs in business and IT management skills;
- Empower the rural citizen through information distribution and inter-markets linkages
The Structure of the CSC Scheme
CSC Project implementation and operational structure is a three layered structure that includes State Designated Agency (SDA), Services Centre Agency (SCA) and Village Level entrepreneur (VLE). In addition, the Department of Information Technology (DIT) has appointed a National Level Service Agency (NLSA) to support the SDA as well as the SCA for the implementation of the CSC scheme.
Village Level Entrepreneur (VLE): The VLE is crucial to the success of the CSC operations who would manage its operations at the ground level. A good VLE would be someone who has good entrepreneurial skills, strong social commitment as well as respect within the community. Selection and proper training of the VLE would play a vital role in effective implementation of the CSCs. The VLEs would report to the SCA.
Service Centre Agency (SCA):As owners of the CSC network, the SCA would be the prime driver of the CSC centres in predefined areas of the state. The SCA would undertake activities such as identifying the required applications and services, harnessing the state network, selecting and training the VLE, establishing the CSC (either directly or through the VLE), supplying, aggregating and updating content and services and so on.
State Designated Agency (SDA): At the third level, thereexists the agency designed by state known as the Sate Designated Agency (SDA, to implement policy guidelines from time to time, provide Government to citizens (G2C) services, and disburse financial/revenue support to the SCAs.
CSC Service Profile
The CSCs would offer a multitude of services ranging in the areas of e-Government, education, health, agriculture, commercial, retail, etc. It is to be noted that delivery of Government services, termed as G2C (Government to Citizen) services, would be mandatory for the CSCs. In addition to government services, the CSCs would also provide Business services to the citizens, termed as B2C (Business to Citizen) services, that will encompass various commercial, education, agriculture, health, entertainment services at a reasonably priced rate.