By Dr Arvind Kumar
The Public Service Guarantee Act 2010 passed by the Madhya Pradesh Assembly on 30 July 2010 is a stepping stone to have clean governance. The Act guarantees delivery of time bound services to common people, failing which officials will have to pay a fine. In case, citizens fail to get services on time, ‘they could make an appeal to first and second appellate officers, who would give instructions to the officers concerned. If there is a delay, the officers would have to pay a fine of Rs 250 per day, with a maximum of Rs 5,000.’ If first appellate officer fails to ensure delivery of services without valid reason, he, too, would have to pay a fine amounting minimum Rs 500 and maximum at Rs 5,000. There would be a fixed time as to how many days an officer is entitled keep a file. The Government promises that soon the office of the Chief Minister and Ministers too will be brought under the preview of the legislation in future. It would indeed empower the citizen to demand their right to have time bound services.
The Madhya Pradesh Public Service Guarantee Act 2010 is the first-of-its-kind in the country. It has thrown a challenge to the State Governments and Central Government. Other states as well as the Centre should emulate this example and enact similar laws to ensure good governance