Chhimi Dema 

For past few weeks, the social media platforms were flooded with pictures of people queuing up for services in front of Road Safety and Transport Authority (RSTA).

A 31-year-old man from Thimphu waited two hours outside RSTA just for a receipt after making payment.

The online payment for RSTA services is made through Government to Citizen (G2C) portal.

An official from Public Services and Grievances Redressal Division (PSGRD), previously G2C Services Office, said that while making online payment it had to be routed through Royal Monetary Authority’s payment gateway to the banks and then to the agencies’ system.

Inserting inaccurate personal and financial details disrupted completion of the payment, the official said.

While making online payments through the portal, users would, for example, select Bank of Bhutan but insert the account number of other banks.

In some cases, the users type their fixed and minors’ bank account numbers.

Another issue noted by PSGRD was users not receiving one-time-password (OTP) to confirm their payment. If users have changed their mobile number or not updated their number with the financial institutions, then they would not receive the OTP, which would then stall their payment.

While engaging in other activities payment cannot be made, said the official.

The official said that the availability of stable internet connection and functional computer or laptop were required to avail online services through the portal. The data centre at Thimphu TechPark and systems with agencies have to be functional as well.

The official said some people stood in queue because they did not know about the availability of online services.

Digital literacy in the country is an issue.

The official said that some people were not aware of the existence of online services. Many do not know how to use it.

There is a misunderstanding that every online services in place are monitored by PSGRD, the official said.  “The RSTA online services use the G2C portal, but it is not under PSGRD.”

The G2C portal is a gateway where services from various agencies are put in a common portal for easy access. The agencies maintain their own systems.

PSGRD is mandated to provide simplify and enhance the delivery of public services both offline and online.

PSGRD collaborates with various agencies and monitors their service delivery.

The portal receives about 5,000 visitors in a day.

RSTA in the last six months accepted 31,755 online transactions for their various online services.

According to RSTA’s records, the online transaction between March and April increased by 81.94 percent from 21 percent in the previous months.

People queuing up in front of RSTA for past few weeks were to clear the backlogs from the previous months.

RSTA’s officiating Director-General Ugyen Norbu said that the Authority requested the Royal Civil Service Commission to allow temporary recruitment of Class 12 graduates to provide additional manpower.

Additional recruitment would help clear the Authority’s clerical work, he said.

He said that after receiving complaints about non-issuance of receipts from online payment, an ICT officer from information and communications ministry is being called to troubleshoot the system every day.

The Authority’s mobile app, mRSTA, was updated with additional features to allow people to avail themselves of RSTA’s services.  Ugyen Norbu said that the app would have information such as a person’s driving licence and registration certificate.

Fines and penalties would not be levied from those unable to renew vehicle documents and driving licence has been extended till October 5, 2020.

Ugyen Norbu said that the Authority was considering providing driving tests on weekends. If driving tests are conducted on weekends, then efficient service can be delivered on the weekdays.

He said that an additional service counter could be added provided there is enough manpower.