A Cabinet Minister in the government of a South Indian state was looking for ways to connect with citizens to enable them to raise issues and be heard.DOWNLOAD WHITEPAPER
Responded to by Minister
Citizens’ participation in a healthy democracy doesn’t end on
voting day. Too often in India, elected representatives become
inaccessible to the general public after the election campaigns
are over, leading to a marked lack of accountability. Logistical,
physical, financial and other barriers limit a person’s ability to
meet and interact with their MLA or MP.
A Cabinet Minister in the government of a South Indian state was looking for ways to connect with citizens to enable them to raise issues and be heard.
To facilitate a two-way, real-time discussion between a Cabinet Minister the government of a South Indian state and the general public. To enable users to join a townhall-esque conversation with the Minister and get answers to burning questions.
A system that would enable users to pose questions directly to the Minister and be answered in near real-time. Moreover, participants who had joined the conversation would be able to also see questions asked by other participants and along with the Minister’s response.
Users started a conversation with the Minister on chat app by asking a question which was first
vetted by a group of moderators. Moderators selected questions that would have touched on various
important issues from infrastructure to minor rights to plans to tackle unemployment and rural
Selected questions would be posed to the minister who would provide an answer orally. The Minister’s response was typed and sent out by agents (manning a web panel) to the users.
Of over 40000 people who joined the conversation, more than 8000 unique users were able to answer
tough questions to the Minister over the 2-hour session. Questions about unkept election promises or
the inaction on the upliftment of economically backward classes were directly asked of the Minister.
Approximately 22% of the questions asked pertained to Education, followed by Rural Development,
Housing and Food, Youth Issues, and Pensions.
Previously, citizens simply did not have this kind of ease of access to their representatives. The system built for this event was able to provide unparalleled access, thus, increasing accountability in governance.
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