TCS, Infosys, Wipro vie for e-governance overhaul pie

MCA21, the government's ambitious e-governance programme for India Inc, is all set for an overhaul as the ministry of corporate affairs works on the next-generation version at a time when it faces increasing risks of corporate frauds. A host of top IT companies like TCS, Infosys and Wipro are believed to be vying for the prestigious project, which is estimated to have a budget of hundreds of crores of rupees.

Corporate affairs minister Veerappa Moily said that bids have already been called for the second phase of MCA21 and a decision will be taken soon. "We want to take this forward as early as possible," Moily told TOI here at a time when the ministry has sent the Rs 870-crore Reebok fraud case to the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO).

Moily said the thrust in the revamp of MCA21 will be on making the system more vigilant so that suspect activities of corporates could be tracked as early as possible. "The idea is to roll out the next set of reforms. The focus will be to make the whole system transparent and make it a tool that acts as an early warning system against frauds," he said.

The MCA21 programme was initiated in 2006 and the thrust of the e-activity was to start the adoption of secure electronic filing (e-Filing) for all the services provided by the Registrar of Companies (ROC), including incorporation of a company, annual filing, registration of charges and other event-based filings.

The project, which saw a reduction in time-consuming paperwork, cost the government upwards of Rs 300 crore. While the cost of the upgrade is not yet confirmed, sources say it could be in the same order, or even higher.

The government feels that a greater thrust on computerization in regular corporate filings will give it enough scope to keep a check on illegal or lax activities by companies.