18 April, 2019 Kathmandu – Almost all the government institution has the same reason to stop the services, technical difficulties or literally telling servers down. In fact, there is no such words in technical terms that servers down but it should be called unreachable due to some connectivity issues or malfunctioning of services.
Hundreds of service seekers at different transport offices across the country had to return home without getting any of their work done on Wednesday due to technical difficulties.
Throughout the day, service seekers, who were there to renew their licence or issue new ones,stayed in line for hours to an end, while staff at the transport office sat idle, not informing the people that their server was not working.
“I was told to come at 10 am to get my new licence. I waited for a long, long time, and left without even getting my licence,” said Rony Maharjan, a doctor by profession, who went to the Ekantakuna-based Transportation Management Office in Lalitpur. Maharjan, a resident of Kirtipur, had taken the day off to get her new licence. “I asked the officials about what was going on, but nobody gave me a clear answer. They said the servers were down, and they were not sure when they were going to fix it,” she said.
The office at Ekantakuna is one of the most crowded places for service seekers. People start flocking to the office at as early as 8 am. Wednesday morning too, hundreds of people had already arrived by 8 am. But officials pasted a notice of the server not functioning only at around 12 noon, after people had waited for more than four hours. The notice did not inform when the problem would be fixed.
The reporters of media reached out to the computer operator’s office and talked with contact operator Uddhab Phuyal. “We can do nothing. It’s the responsibility of the National Information Technology Center (NITC) office to fix this problem,” said Phuyal. “In the past four months this problem was repeated for four times.”
Ramesh Pokharel, deputy director at the NITC, said the server was down due to the Tuesday’s lightning strike. “Many servers were down today, such as the Prime Minister’s office and the Land Revenue Office. We were busy fixing the servers of those offices, because they demanded immediate attention. And then we couldn’t fix the transportation department’s problem in time,” said Pokharel. He said the server was down due to an interruption in the uninterruptible power supply (UPS).
“This is a serious problem, and it will not repeat again,” assured Pokharel.
According to Kumar Prasad Dahal, director General at Department of Transport Management Office, every day the office distributes 3,000 licences and renews an equal number of licences from 15 different offices all across the country. Kathmandu Valley alone has been providing services from Ekantakuna, Sanobharyang, Sallaghari, and Chabahil. Similarly, the office’s report shows that every day 4,000 people register for a new licence online. Considering the numbers, the failure of the department’s server impacted thousands of people.
“I came all the way from Dhading to get a new licence, even after being stuck in a traffic jam in the Kalanki-Naghdhunga road section for hours. But only after coming here did I know that the office was closed,” said Sanjaya Adhikari. “Whenever you go to any government office, your work almost always never gets completed on time. It is as if the officers do not feel accountable for their customers.”
Amisha Tamang, another service seeker, from Nakkhu, who had to return home with a day wasted, shared the same sentiments. “I was told the office would open at 10 am, so I came a little early to avoid a long line. But the office didn’t open until 10:30,” says Tamang. “And after waiting for hours, finally around 12, they told us the servers are down. Why couldn’t they have someone fix it? Our entire day got ruined and we have to come again tomorrow. This is such a waste of time.”
As we have known for long time, All the government offices across Nepal are lack of knowledgeable staffs, unwillingness and not even care for service seekers. Found many offices are ruined by middleman or so called helpers which in term are the ATM for government officers of those department to generate cash from customers to them by completing customer’s work done.
As we know, there should be some spare machines to keep standby, backup servers and data centers to establish to safeguard all the documented data and alternative connectivity should be implemented.