With 2.8 million people approaching Pakistan Citizen’s Portal (PCP) through smart phones or internet for redressal of their complaints, Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed for the provision of manual complaint lodging facility to people belonging to remote rural areas having no smart phones or internet access. The facility of complaint lodging manually would be provided to those who have neither smart phones nor internet access; unable to read/write; physically challenged; women/widows and elderly/ senior citizens; whose destination of service delivery or issue dealing office far away etc. In that respect, Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit (PMDU) has also been directed to convene briefing session for all focal persons and also launch public awareness campaign through PTV, Radio Pakistan and other private media channels and social media platforms, a press release issued by PMDU here on Thursday said. PCP was being used as a tool to promote citizen centric participatory governance. On one side, it provides a nation-wide window to connect people with government organizations for raising their issues while on the other side, it helps promote the culture of quantified performance management and make the various government entities accountable for their mandated roles and responsibilities. It also helps the policy makers to identity policy gaps and grey areas in the service delivery regime for timely intervention and improvement Since October 2018, PCP has been successfully providing remote connectivity with government authorities to a large number of people in the country. It has proved as a vibrant tool for raising issues pertaining to governance and service delivery. Initially, complaint lodging was possible through smart phones while web-based version of PCP and holding of Khuli Kachehris by 24 Federal Organizations have recently been added to enhance users access. Despite limited number of smart phone users in the country, still 2.8 million have registered on the system in the last two years. Prior to launching of the system, the prime minister had desired during a briefing held on 16-10-2018 that all available options shall be explored whereby access to all segments of the society could be ensured. It was desired that besides smart phones and web-based accessibility to PCP, people who were either illiterate or belonging to remote rural areas or have no smart phones or internet access should also be catered for. In view of the above, the prime minister has directed that all officers having PCP-dashboards shall, besides processing their own complaints, provide manually complaint lodging facility from their respective dashboards to the people of respective localities. Ehsaas Emergency Cash: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Poverty Alleviation and Social Protection, Dr. Sania Nishtar Thursday said Ehsaas Emergency Cash programme has largely helped the country respond to the immediate crisis of COVID-19 through providing relief to the poorest households in Pakistan as well as putting in place critical building blocks for a stronger and deeper financial inclusion of the disadvantaged populations. She was addressing the International Webinar on “Integration and Digitization of G2P Programs” in Indonesia. The webinar was hosted by the Ministry of National Development Planning, Republic of Indonesia, in collaboration with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Bank. The international webinar aimed to support the digital transformation process of social assistance programs’ payment in Indonesia through a more beneficiary centered design, improving the quality of life of the recipients as well as the efficiency and effectiveness of the programs. The event also intended to familiarize Indonesian policymakers with the international best practices of G2P payment program digitalization. Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Sania Nishtar shared the scale and ambition of Ehsaas Financial and Digital Inclusion Initiatives and said “Ehsaas financial inclusion is a multi-component initiative that gives access to 21st century financial tools through financial and digital inclusion of seven million disadvantaged households and promotion of access to micro credit and bank accounts for informal workers. She said this inclusive initiative is hinged on biometrically enabled digital payment system that will transition to the State Bank of Pakistan led Micropayment Gateway by 2021. Sharing the insights on Ehsaas Emergency Cash, Dr. Nishtar stated, “the government of Pakistan allocated $1.2 billion to deliver emergency cash to extremely poor for controlling the socio-economic impact of COVID-19 pandemic”. She said Ehsaas Emergency Cash was the largest and most extensive social protection intervention ever in the history of the country. Digital capabilities established in 2019 as part of Ehsaas framework were capitalized to disburse Ehsaas Emergency Cash.