Category Archives: Digital Bangladesh

DAISY (Digital Accessible Information System) Standards

 

The DAISY Consortium develops, maintains and promotes international DAISY (Digital Accessible Information System) Standards.

DAISY digital format assists people who, for various reasons, have challenges using regular printed media. DAISY digital talking books offer the benefits of regular audiobooks, but they are superior because DAISY includes navigation.

DAISY Makes Reading Easier (YouTube Video)  transcript

DAISY Multimedia

Source. http://www.daisy.org/

 

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UNDP Bangladesh Publications

Significant number of development programs are supported by UNDP. Reports on these projects are published regularly. This is one of the reliable source of secondary data for ICT4D related research related to Bangladesh

URL:  http://www.undp.org.bd/info/pub.php

ToT began on how to run UISC

Source: A2I, http://digitalbangladesh.gov.bd

Government has a plan to set up 1000 Union Information and Service Centre (UISC) across the country by June 2010. Skill development for the entrepreneurs is prerequisite for UISC.

With this in mind, a training of trainers (ToT) on how to run a Tele-centre began at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on May 08, 2010. UNDP supported Access to Information (a2i) Programme, National Institute of Local Government (NILG) and Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) jointly organized the training event.

Mahfuzur Rahman, Executive Director of Bangladesh Computer Council inaugurated the event as the chief guest. The National Project Director of Access to Information (a2i), Md. Nazrul Islam Khan was in the chair.

In addition to 100 existing UISCs, NILG will set up 900 more UISCs across the country by June 2010. The trainees will provide training to the entrepreneurs who will run the UISC afterwards. The training program is designed to building the capacity of entrepreneurs so that they can provide service to rural people efficiently.

120 participants divided into four batches from Bangladesh Computer Council are attending the training program. Each batch will be provided a four day long training on Information and Communication Technology and e-services.

 

ePurjee ends sugarcane farmers’ misery

Source: The Daily Star, http://www.thedailystar.net/story.php?nid=151417, 20 August, 2010

Farmers of the subcontinent have started to grow sugarcane commercially since the colonial era and the process of procuring sugarcane, founded by the British, was a bit messy and lengthy since then.

The then governments gave estimations to the farmers according to the capacity of their lands through a ‘Purjee’- a hand-written purchase order- and the system had not been improved till 2008 when there are around 2.5 lakh sugarcane farmers in the country.

‘Purjee’ is a legal permit for the sugarcane growers given by the sugar mill, which help them to supply produces and receive payment against it.

A ‘Purjee’ validity remains only for three days in which growers must supply their produces to the sugar mills. The criticality of this period gives certain groups of people an opportunity to foster corruption, thus depriving the growers of their rights to access information.

Besides, the growers need to wait in the mill gate for several days after which the mill management buy their crop. As a result, the sugarcane lose its weight reducing returns for the farmers.

Against the backdrop of various sufferings of the farmers, Forhad Zahid Shaikh, a visionary system analyst of the Access to Information (A2I) Programme at Prime Minister’s Office, realised the urgency of improving the existing system in 2008.

In his voice, “I have a first-hand experience of how sugarcane farmers suffer during the harvesting”.

“I wanted to do help the farmers in a way that serves the best and then the idea of digitising the ‘Purjee’ system came to my mind”, said Shaikh.

The Digital Sugarcane Procurement and Development System or Digital Purjee Information Service, a joint initiative of A2I programme and Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corporation (BSFIC) was preliminarily introduced in two sugar mills out of 15 across the country — Faridpur and Mobarakganj sugar mills.

The SMS based “Purjee Management System” sends text messages from authorise centre of the sugar mills to the listed growers’ mobile phone, notifying them the beginning of the harvesting season in late October.

More importantly, the system relieves the farmers from queuing in front of the sugar mills.

“In case of emergency, like information of Purjee cancellation, stoppage of cane supply or inclement weather, the notifying system is very efficient, cost and time effective”, Shaikh stated.

Shahidul Islam, a Sugarcane grower of Magura said, “This service not only acted as a confirmation of Purjee issuance, but also reduced our challenges in supplying Sugarcane on time.”

“We are going to implement the system in all sugar mills from October this year. And we are taking all the field level preparations right now”, Shaikh told this reporter.

Hats off to A2I and BSFIC for the initiative.

BTRC makes mobile phone customer care calls toll-free

Source: http://www.bdnews24.com/details.php?id=170818&cid=2

Mon, Aug 16th, 2010 4:56 pm BdST

Dhaka, August 16 (bdnews24.com) — The telecoms regulator has moved to ensure free customer care calls for mobile phone customers.

The regulator has also issued a number of specific directives regarding basic services to mobile phone customers.

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has directed mobile operators to switch to a common toll free number 121 for customer care services by October and also asked not to charge for calls or text messages to that number.

At present, the operators charge between Tk 1 and Tk 2 per minute for calls made to customer care services.

The regulatory commission, in a directive of August 4, also set certain benchmarks for the quality of customer service in an effort to “protect social and economic interest of the customers”.

Operators are obligated to respond within 90 seconds by a call centre agent. In case of electronic response it is 20 seconds.

“The initiative aims to reduce hassles of the consumers; there are cases when a subscriber has to wait for long for a response,” a BTRC official said preferring anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to the press.

Despite several attempts, BTRC chairman Zia Ahmed could not be reached for any comments.

According to the directive, consumers will be able to lodge complaints with the commission if respective companies fail to address their problems.

The regulator has also reserved the provision to issue a compulsory enforcement order to the telecom operators in such cases.

Operators will have to maintain a database system of such toll free calls including related information of the complaints from customers and disposals of the complaints.

It also asked to record details of officials handling the grievances, so that proper action can be taken in case a customer is not satisfied with the service.

Operators will also have to submit a quarterly report to the BTRC, where the number and type of complaints received and the actions taken against it have to be included.

The reports have to be sent to the BTRC with 15 days from the end of each quarter, reads the directive.

It also asked operators to settle all refunds like, deposit, credit, waiver or adjustments within a month of billing or charging.

bdnews24.com/rhn/ta/1645h