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2.1 Indian Government Identity

Visitors to a Government website are very particular about ensuring the veracity and authenticity of the official status of the website before trusting its contents. Hence, it is important to convey in some way to the visitors that Indian Government officially sponsors and owns the information and services being provided in the concerned website. All websites and Portals belonging to the Indian Government Domain at any hierarchical level (Apex Offices, Constitutional Bodies, Ministries, Departments, Organisations, States/UTs, District Administrations, and Village Panchayats et al) must prominently display a strong Identity and ownership of Indian Government. The above objective can be achieved through the following:

2.1.1

State Emblem of India MUST be displayed on the Homepage of the websites of Central Government Ministries/Departments. The usage of State Emblem of India on an Indian Government website must comply with the directives as per the ‘State Emblem of India (Prohibition of improper use) Act, 2005’. Further, the State Governments should also display their Emblems (or the State Emblem of India in case the State has adopted it as its official Emblem) as per the Code provided in the above Act. Public Sector organisations and autonomous bodies should display their official logo on the Homepage of the website to reinforce their identity. These logo images must be accompanied by proper alternate text so that the screen reader uses may be informed of the same.

2.1.2

The Homepage and all important entry pages of the website MUST display the ownership information, either in the header or footer.

2.1.3

The lineage of the Department should also be indicated at the bottom of the Homepage and all important entry pages of the website. For instance, at the bottom of the Homepage, the footer may state the lineage information, in the following manner:

  1. ‘This Website belongs to Department of Heavy Industries, Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Government of India’ (for a Central Government Department).
  2. ‘This Website belongs to Department of Industries, State Government of Himachal Pradesh, India’ (for a State Government Department).
  3. ‘This is the official Website of Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL), a Public Sector Undertaking of the Government of India under the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas’ (for a Public Sector Undertaking).
  4. ‘This is the official Website of the District Administration of Thanjavur, State Government of Tamil Nadu (India)’ (for a District of India).

2.1.4

All subsequent pages of the website should also display the ownership information in a summarised form. Further, the search engines often index individual pages of a website and therefore, it is important that each webpage belonging to a site displays the relevant ownership information.

2.1.5

In case of those websites which belong to Inter-Departmental initiatives involving multiple Government Departments which are difficult to list on the Homepage, the Government ownership should still be reflected clearly at the bottom of the page with detailed information provided in the ‘About the Portal/Website’ section.

2.1.6

The page title of the Homepage (the title specified by HTMLtag which appears on the top bar of the browser) MUST describe the topic and purpose of the page. Page title should be complete with the name of the country included, for instance, instead of the title being just Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, it should state, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India. Alternatively, in case of a State Government Department, it should state ‘Department of Health, Government of Karnataka, India’. This will not only facilitate an easy and unambiguous identification of the website but would also help in a more relevant and visible presence in the search engine results. Further, it is important since the screen readers used by the visually impaired users first read the title of the page and in case the title is not explanatory enough, it may confuse or mislead them. (Ref. WCAG 2.4.2)