Aiming to step up its waste management and beautification efforts and rejuvenate waterbodies, the Delhi Cantonment Board (DCB) has initiated several measures focused on the zero-waste policy. As a part of its sanitation drive, the board recently launched the Samadhan mobile application, an initiative to empower all Delhi Cantonment residents. The app will enable them to report and evaluate the cleanliness levels of their surrounding areas. While on the one hand the app meets the DCB’s mandate towards sanitation, on the other hand, it gives the residents an effective platform to post their complaints and track the status of the same.
Given the huge thrust on sanitation, the board’s performance has improved significantly in recent years. It was ranked fifteenth in the Swachh Bharat survey released in August 2016, one step ahead of the New Delhi Municipal Council. The Delhi Cantonment area is spread across 10,000 acres of land and has a population of over 100,000 individuals.
Functions of the Samadhan application
The Samadhan app allows users to post complaints through pictures under various categories. These are as follows:
- Malba/Garbage: Users can upload pictures of areas littered by garbage or debris on this tab.
- Water complaint: Users can upload pictures of waterbodies that are being polluted or areas with poor drainage/water clogging.
- Sewerage: This tab covers areas where sewage is the cause of pollution.
- Street light: This tab pertains to street lights that are either damaged or not operational, causing inconvenience to the citizens of that particular area.
- Animal/Dog: Through this tab, users can complain about stray animals/dogs in localities that are causing inconvenience to local citizens.
- Unauthorised construction: This tab allows users to upload pictures of any kind of unauthorised construction being carried out in areas under the board.
- Public toilet: Through this tab, pictures of unclean, damaged or non-functional toilets can be posted.
- Others: The remaining categories of sanitation issues come under this tab such as unauthorised activities in the area under the DCB.
Once a picture is uploaded, the app displays the option to add a caption and location. On confirming the complaint, the app automatically generates a complaint number, which can be used to track the status of the complaint. After this, the page displays two options – “post another complaint” and “view complaint status”. Besides offering the above services, the application allows the users to maintain their own accounts through which they can view all the complaints they have lodged till date along with their status, upload pending pictures, share the app with others, report bugs, learn about the app, and rate the performance of the app.
An e-governance initiative under the Digital India project, the Samadhan app was created by the DCB as a means of achieving better sanitation in the Delhi Cantonment area by involving citizens in reporting sanitation issues in their surrounding areas. It has played a vital role in bridging the gap between the board and the citizens, by facilitating communication between the two. The launch of such an app has made the board’s operations more transparent and has increased its accountability towards the citizens. The successful implementation of this initiative and the improved performance of the board thus make a strong case for the adoption of IT-enabled approaches for problem-solving by municipal corporations.