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Under the Odisha Girls’ Incentive Program (OGIP), the SC and ST girls studying in IXth and Xth class across the 30 districts of Odisha are getting a conditional scholarship. Sponsored by DFID, the programme also provides technical assistance in rolling out of the centrally sponsored Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme for Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe students of IXth and Xth class in Odisha (PMS). Under the PMS scheme the SC and ST boys studying in IXth and Xth class with an income cap of 2 lakh rupees are also covered.

The scale of coverage is widespread and a number of activities have to be taken care of for proper implementation of the program. The major activities are listed below:
  • Outreach
  • Awareness activities
  • Financial inclusion (opening of bank accounts for all beneficiaries)
  • Direct Benefits transfer
  • Technical support in program delivery (e.g. support in verification of documents like caste/income certificates, data entry, provision of scholarship forms etc.).

Since it is one of a kind program focusing on direct cash transfer to the students, it was imperative to set up a grievance redressal system. The aim was to receive and redress the complaints and answer queries of the beneficiaries and ensure that people repose faith in it. The grievance redressal system is based on citizen centric rights based approach where the consumer of services is rightfully compensated for delivery deficits.

The redressal system was designed to increase the accountability of the personnel and institutions involved in disbursement of the scholarship. It provided a platform to the beneficiaries to voice their concerns or dissatisfaction about poor or inadequate performance. Therefore, it was essential that a sustainable redressal system should be designed. Keeping this fact in place, it was proposed to utilize the existing government structures and institutions and a convergence with the existing student helpline operated by Government of Odisha was done.

The philosophy behind setting up this system was to monitor the efficiency and effectiveness of the scheme and help deliver quality service. The system was aimed at increasing the accountability of the service providers and government officials. It intended to make the government officials and the field functionaries more responsive to the needs of the students and their families.

Philosophy of the Grievance Redressal System

Efficient programme delivery depends upon a responsive and effective Grievance Redressal System. Delivery of social programmes like OGIP requires creation of linkages between the people, the implementing agency and the government in a seamless manner and GRS has been designed based on this philosophy only. The system ensures that during the roll out of any phase of the programme, there is a direct emphasis on speedy redress of complaints, queries and issues received/ raised by the beneficiaries.

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