New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) plans to create a blockchain-based infrastructure for their Record Management System (RMS) and will then migrate their existing birth certificate and property tax database to this infrastructure.

The National Capital Territory of Delhi (NCT) consists of three local bodies – Municipa Corporation of Delhi, NDMC and Cantonment Board. While MCD comprises about 96 percent of the area and population of Delhi, the NDMC is only 3 percent of the population.

The NDMC area includes the area that is considered to be the seat of the Central Authority in India. It includes buildings such as Rashtrapati Bhawan, Parliament House. About 80% of the buildings in the NDMC area are owned by the Government of India.

“The IT department (of NDMC) intends to migrate all data set related databases to blockchain technology and to implement / develop the blockchain based database environment RMS for all applications related to record keeping to prevent tampering (sic) “The tender was published iby the NDMC said. The city government said blockchain was introduced to prevent tampering with records.

“Blockchain technology would bring more transparency to the entire process of issuing birth certificates. Because blockchain is immutable, it would be easier to detect suspected tampering, ”AW Ansari, Joint Director, NMDC told MediaNama

Source: NDMC tender

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As soon as a provider has been selected for the project, it has to develop the blockchain infrastructure within two months. The company is then expected to migrate the birth and death database to this infrastructure within three months. And then the inheritance and property tax database has to be migrated within five months.

Blockchain ecosystem requirements

  • Seamless authentication
  • Physical submission of documents is not mandatory
  • The platform records and manages the hash of digital artifacts in a tamper-proof manner
  • Output receipts contain hash and an embedded QR code that can be used for future reviews
  • Dashboard to view compliance / non-compliance after review with blockchain details
  • Malware resistant
  • Trust between parties

Blockchain proven for birth / death certificates

A report from Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) with the title “Blockchain: The Next Innovation to Make Our Cities Smarter” emphasizes that there are systemic problems with regard to accuracy, uniformity and timeliness in birth and death registrations.

It set out a possible process for how birth registrations can be done via blockchain –

  • When a child is born, the doctor logs into a user interface that acts as a registration portal linked to a smart contract in the blockchain network.
  • All relevant information (date of birth, name, residence, blood group, details of the legal guardian, etc.) is updated in editable fields in the smart contract.
  • The smart contract is moved to the parent node, where the newborn’s parents review the information and digitally sign the form.
  • The smart contract is moved to the registrar’s node, where the registrar validates each field in the “smart form” with a binary response (valid or invalid).
  • If all fields in the smart form are valid, a unique digital signature is generated associated with that form, which is stamped into the record and updated on the blockchain.
  • A corresponding data record is generated as a certificate, which is now updated to the citizen’s DigiLocker / similar account, printed with a unique digital signature

Blockchain introduction in India

Earlier this year, the IT ministry recommended that the government create a Blockchain Framework (NLBF) at the national level to encourage the adoption of blockchain technology in a variety of public use cases. The Ministry’s draft National Blockchain Strategy suggests that various public projects can be brought onto a blockchain platform, including for digital identities, land registers and official documents, and healthcare.

The report recommends that the government create a legal and regulatory framework for the adoption of blockchain technology in various public and private sectors, while building capacity for blockchain research and innovation to compete with other nations. There are currently various efforts by government agencies and the private sector to adopt blockchain technology. However, to scale the technology effectively, you need to scale deployments, explore different domains, develop shared infrastructures, and develop cross-domain applications.

As early as 2018, a one month old baby in West Bengal was the first to receive a birth certificate, which, according to a, was saved on a blockchain report in times of India. According to an Economic Times, Thane Municipal Corporation began work on a blockchain-based pilot solution for property tax assessment report.

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