Monitoring for Effective Service Delivery – The Case of USO Funded Schemes
Kurukshetra, Vol. 58, No. 3, January 2010
ABSTRACT VIEWS: 409
Effective monitoring of rural development schemes and service delivery thereof is a vital yet challenging task. The Government may involve the private sector in implementation but will also need to involve, educate and empower the public i.e. the community at large and target beneficiaries in particular. Service provision public or private must be well regulated by the Government and finally the target community must be involved and empowered. In the author’s view, the essence of effective implementation of developmental schemes, whether the implementing agency is public or private, is delivery of desired end results and benefits to the target populations. This requires a three pronged approach whereby the public is made aware about the scheme and implementation details and a feedback mechanism is available to beneficiaries. To implement a scheme properly and to monitor it effectively, the primary aim of the scheme must be clear and constantly kept in sight. In this context, it is educational to study the implementation and monitoring of the subsidy programme-the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) in India. This programme is unique in the sense that there is an all India set up of departmental offices by way of Controller of Communication Accounts Offices (CCA Offices are field offices of the Department of Telecommunications (DOT)) that receive and settle USOF subsidy claims from service providers, supervise and facilitate scheme implementation where required and also perform the vital function of post payment verification of subsidy claims by way of a combination of documentary checks and field inspections. In this manner USOF ensures that leakages are avoided and scheme objectives are actually achieved on ground.