The Kerala Shops and Commercial Establishments Workers Welfare Fund Board became the first Welfare Fund Board to utilise the mobile governance platform of the Kerala State IT Mission (KSITM) when the State Minister for Industries & Commerce, Elamaram Kareem inaugurated its m-Governance initiative aimed at extending G2C services to its members.
The SMS facility and m-Governance initiative was launched at a function held in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday, February 16, 2011. Started in March 2007, the Kerala Shops and Commercial Establishments Workers Welfare Fund Board has about 4 lakh members in 11 Districts of Kerala.
S Rajendran, Board Chairman said that about ten services of the Board which were now provided through its website (www.peedika.kerala.gov.in) will be available to its members over their mobile phones. This initiative to use the latest technology will ensure transparency and efficiency in the Board’s transactions.
Workers in shops and commercial establishments will now be able to know if their employer is registered with the Welfare Fund Board and if their employers are contributing their share to the welfare fund without fail. They can also check their account balance and the status of their application for loan with the Board. The board, on their part, will be able to send acknowledgements and information alerts on the services offered to the members.
The m-governance scheme being rolled out by the IT Mission is based on the SMS platform so that people with basic handsets can also benefit from the service. The KSITM has an understanding with all mobile operators in Kerala for using the unique short code 537252. Though the code is the same, different formats would have to be followed for accessing different services.
Home Minister, Shri Kodiyeri Balakrishnan and Labour Minister Shri P K Gurudasan were present on the occasion.