UMANG app services triple during lockdown

Reported by: |Updated: February 24, 2021

Its international version will help Indian international students, NRIs and Indian tourists abroad, to avail services from GoI, anytime:

Ravi Shankar Prasad hopes that a voice-based solution using AI may be developed for UMANG to reach to common people in remote corners

The Unified Mobile Application for New-age Governance, or UMANG, mobile app is a Government of India released all-in-one single, unified, secure, multi-channel, multi-lingual, multi-service mobile app, providing access to high impact services of various central and state government departments. Over the last 3 years, the app has seen more than 37.5 million downloads and there are 25 million registered users while maintaining an average Play Store rating of 4+ from more than 136,000 users. UMANG has now grown to provide 2039 services (373 from 88 central departments, 487 from 101 departments of 27 state governments and 1179 services for utility bill payments) and the count is just growing.

INTERNATIONAL VERSION

To mark the completion of 3 years and 2000+ services milestone, the Central Government organized an online conference under the chairmanship of Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister for Electronics and Information Technology, Communications and Law & Justice recently. The occasion also saw the launch of an international version of the app in coordination with the ministry of external affairs. This version of the app will be available for customers in select countries that include the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia, the UAE, the Netherlands, Singapore and New Zealand.

It is expected to help Indian international students, NRIs and Indian tourists abroad, who can avail Government of India’s services, anytime. It will also help in taking India to the world through ‘Indian Culture’ services available on UMANG and create interest among tourists to visit India. The international version be downloaded from Play Store in these countries. Ravi Shankar Prasad said Indians globally were keen to connect with India and maintain their contact with their roots, to pass on information on Indian culture and heritage to the next generation and hence the government services available on UMANG must play a very proactive role.

eBOOK, MOST TRANSACTIONS

On the occasion, the minister also launched an e-Book, which presents major milestones of UMANG and major services available under the app, which are classified into various categories for different segments of society – farmers, students, culture, health, utility services, public grievances and citizen engagement, finance & banking, transport, services for women and children, youth skills and employment, police and legal services, MEA services, states services etc. He also unveiled the newly instituted UMANG Awards for partner departments of central and state governments based on the highest number of transactions across services. In the central department category, EPFO was awarded the platinum partner award, followed by DigiLocker (gold partner), ESIC and Bharat Gas services (silver partners); HP Gas, Doordarshan, National Consumer Helpline, CBSE, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban, Jeevan Pramaan & Jan Aushadhi Sugam (bronze partners). This was based on monthly average transactions. For the services of state governments, the top 3 states based on average monthly transactions were Gujarat, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh.

HOME GROWN, INCLUSIVE TECH

Ravi Shankar Prasad said digital India must lead to digital inclusion; it must bridge the digital divide. And this must be achieved by technology which is home grown and also inclusive. “This was concretized when the Prime Minister had told me that he wants governance to be available on the palm of every Indian. And thereafter we started this program and what has really struck me was that as on March 2020 UMANG had nearly 643 services; and today in the same year it offers 2000+ services. It indicates the sheer digital appetite of ordinary Indians. This is the metamorphosis from e-Governance to m-Governance. And that is the real shining success of UMANG,” he added.

The minister said a voice-based solution using AI may be developed so that UMANG may reach common people living in the remotest corners of the country, who might not prefer to access services over a voice enabled interface.

Secretary, MeitY, Ajay Sawhney asked the UMAMG team to continue building services to realize the dream of enabling seamless and interoperable services across departments to citizens in an integrated manner.

DBT, VISA SERVICES

Dr V.P. Joy, Secretary, Coordination, Cabinet Secretariat, outlining the role played by UMANG in enabling DBT services, aid 78 DBT services were already available on UMANG and very soon, all DBT services would be integrated on the app. Sanjay Bhattacharyya, Secretary, CPV, ministry of External Affairs, mentioned the ministry would partner with UMANG to bring more visa and consular services on UMANG platform.

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