Taking a big step towards digitizing government services and in efforts to serve the citizens in an easier and timely fashion, the Government of Nepal has launched the “Nagarik App”.
The app was launched by Minister for Communication and Information Technology, Parbat Gurung on January 15th. The Nagarik App holds the potential in becoming the solution for the long lines found outside government offices and a more speedy process through the digital platform.
Where can you download Nagarik App?
The app is available in both App Store and Play Store. But the government has only released the Beta version till now.
After downloading the app, the individual must register and verify their identity through a simple process. Any individual who holds a mobile number under their name can register the app. The process followed by one of the following :
- Citizenship Card
- Voter ID
Features of Nagarik App
After the verification process, the individual now has access to many features of the app. Features include:
- PAN Registration.
- Educational Documents.
- Local Government Information (Like Nagarpalika, Gaupalika)
- Nagarik Lagani Kosh (Citizen Investment Trust)
- Sanchaya Kosh (Employees Provident Fund)
- Samajik Surakshya Kosh ( Social Security Fund)
In addition to these, the Nagarik App can also be used to digitize crucial documents like Citizenship Card, Voter ID Card and Passport to be used digitally.
Another helpful feature found in the app is the “My Complaints” section where users can file their complications and issues.
There are many more features we can expect, as the Beta version does not hold the entire features of the main app. Additional features such as an application for driver’s license & renewal and employment help will be added in the main version.
Security and Privacy Regarding Nagarik App
Taking a look at the aspect of security and privacy regarding the app, we can see a few methods adopted by the developers.
The registration process through the mobile number uses an OTP ( One Time Password) which is valid for only one transaction or a login session, to verify the user.
After the verification process, the user needs to set a password for the app to avoid unidentified access.
In the matter of complications, many people seem to have been facing issues in the registration process. The most common problem seems to be that the SIM Card of the user is not under their name. But this can be resolved by visiting their respective Telephone Networks.
Since this is a beta version, we hope the new updates make this registration process smoother till then we can use the “My Complaints” feature to make the bug known.
Similar approach adopted by other countries.
Many other countries have adopted similar applications such as:
Emirates ID in UAE is an identity card issued by Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship. It is a legal requirement for all UAE citizens and residents to apply for one and carry it with them at all times. The Emirates ID is used:
- to get government services
- to vote in the elections of the Federal National Council
- as a travel document for UAE citizens to travel within the GCC
- as a document to pass immigration through the eGates and smart gates at several airports in the UAE.
Pakistan has been issuing a Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) to citizens over age 18 since 2001. Starting in 2012, the country has been transitioning to the Smart National Identity Card (SNIC). The SNIC includes a data chip that encodes information such as name, father’s name, gender, DOB, photo, address, photo, signature, and identity number. It is used for voting, account opening, pension payouts, and other social programs.
The Nagarik App can represent a first big step towards paving a better path to more digitized and secure government transactions and services leading to a developed and advanced Nepal.