Service at NID Wing agonisingly slow

August 25, 2014

Hundreds of people who visit the National Identity Registration Wing at Agargaon everyday for services, including correction of information in their national ID cards or replacement of lost ones, suffer a lot as the service of the NID Wing has not been decentralised.
Election Commission has introduced national ID card for all citizens above 18 years of age since 2009 to assist service agencies in public and private sectors to verify the identity of an individual.
During a visit to the office, people were seen waiting in long queues for correction of their cards as well as for replacement of the lost cards. They complained about poor services and said that the government should make the service available in all areas to stop harassment of citizens.
Atab Uddin, a primary school teacher in Bhaluka of Mymensingh came to correct his wife’s name on the NID as they planned to visit India for their daughter’s treatment.
He told New Age that they came to the NID office on Tuesday for the third time with all necessary documents to get his wife’s name corrected in the identity card which was a prerequisite for getting passport. But officials told them that they could not deliver the card now and cited ‘technical problems’ as reasons. In the card, Atab’s wife’s name is printed as ‘Hazra’, which should be Hazra Khatun.
Md Liton Hossain, a resident of Baunia in the capital, came to the NID Wing to have the mistake in his date of birth in card corrected.
He said, ‘It is their [NID Wing] mistake, not mine, but I need the correction because I have to open a bank account and apply for a passport’.
Many people were seen sweating in the large waiting room. Some of them came from remote areas, some came to change their addresses but most of the people came for correction of names.
Gazi Mohammad Farid, a businessman, came from the capital’s Malibagh area for the second day on Tuseday. He said an elaborate database should be in place to expedite the process of correction and deliver quick service to the citizens.
Farid visited the office on Monday to get back his corrected ID card, but the authorities told him that they had problems accessing the database and could not provide any service for the day.
An NID wing official told New Age that shortage of manpower was a major problem in providing smooth service to thousands of people every day. Besides, they did not have required
number of experts to deal with technical glitches every day.
The official said that every day they received more than 500 applications for correction and 400 applications for replacement of lost cards. The wing delivers around 1,000 cards after correction every day.
The official said they needed an accurate database to give better service to the citizens. Despite shortage of manpower, every day they deliver around 1,000 national identity cards after correction.
The Election Commission is planning to provide all NID-related services online by September to ease the sufferings of citizens.
The army-backed caretaker government distributed national identity cards to nine crore people in only two years that resulted in small mistakes in the cards.
National Identification Card director (operations) Mohsin Ali told New Age that EC’s National ID registration office would soon offer one-stop service like rectifying erroneous NID cards or replacing lost ones.
He said a project for giving NID card services through Virtual Private Network (VPN) was under way and once it commences, all the upazila election offices would give NID-related services in a day. No one would need to come to Dhaka for correction to their national ID cards or for obtaining new ones.

-Input from New Age

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