Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA) has received SKOCH Gold Award for its “Empowerment of Tribals through IT enabled Scholarship Schemes” project of the Scholarship Division of the Ministry. The 66th SKOCH 2020 Competition was entitled “INDIA RESPONDS TO COVID THROUGH DIGITAL GOVERNANCE” and MoTA chose to participate in DIGITAL INDIA & E-GOVERNANCE - 2020 Competition and the awards were announced on 30th July, 2020.
This project is a step towards achieving unwavering commitment of Government of India towards realizing the dreams of Digital India and bringing transparency as well as ease in the delivery of services. To assimilate with the larger vision of ‘Digital India’ and to realize the cherished goal of e-governance, MoTA has integrated all 5 Scholarship Schemes with DBT Portal under the guidance of DBT Mission. The initiative was rolled out on 12th June 2019 by the Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Arjun Munda and MoS Renuka Singh Sarota.
During 2019-20, under 5 Scholarship schemes, about Rs. 2500 Cr were directly transferred to student’s Bank accounts through DBT to approximately 30 lakh students in 31 States and UTs. The portal provides facilities to States for data sharing through Web services and States can up-load proposals, UCs and SOE online. This has brought a paradigm shift from Paper based UC monitoring mandated for budget release to data enabled budget release and monitoring process. This has considerably reduced scholarship release time and now it is possible to release scholarship in the same academic year in which admission is taken. MoTA has also entered into CEDA (Centre for Data Analytics), which analyzes and prepares State Wise Data Analysis Reports, which helps in data based planning. In the Fellowship Scheme run by the Ministry for doing PhD, all 331 Universities have been integrated with the portal thereby enabling verification application online. Portal is also integrated with Digi-Locker developed by MeiTY so that documents are directly fetched and saves verification time.
The portal has a facility to upload documents, which are not on Digi-Locker. Each of these portals have Grievance Redressal and Communication Mechanism and all stakeholders, Universities, Bank, PFMS, Students and States can upload queries, grievances and upload documents, which has made grievance redressal mechanism easy, transparent and fast. KPMG, as part of its mandate for NITI Aayog, has carried out a national evaluation of Centrally Sponsored Schemes focused on social inclusion, in which it has recognised the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) Portal of Ministry of Tribal Affairs as a best practice in e-governance which has brought about greater transparency, accountability and radical improvement in service delivery to Scheduled Tribe students.
In order to have connect with 7,000 students studying in Top 246 Institutions across India and 4000 Students doing PhD in more than 300 Universities, MoTA has conceptualized a unique concept of Talent pool for empowering ST scholars, which can be connected to various research projects run by TRIs and States.
The project is implemented by IIPA and would help in understanding the aspirations of tribal youth and help in realizing their cherished dream to develop as entrepreneurs, researchers and flag-bearers of schemes of Government of India meant for welfare for STs. While receiving Award, Dr Naval JitKapoor, Joint Secretary, MoTA said that DBT is a silent revolution which has changed the governance mechanism in the country and the projects of such scale are possible only because of vision of our Prime Minister and constant guidance of DBT Mission, NITI Aayog and support of Union Minister, Secretary, entire MoTA team, who have worked very hard during lockdown to ensure that the tribals get their dues in time.