E-tendering in India is a process of submitting and receiving tenders using the internet. The tender-related electronic documents can be exchanged in a secure manner with class 3 digital signature certificates. Submitting online tenders is extremely efficient and can be done at the suppliers’ convenience.
For Gas Authority of India Limited tenders, the suppliers have to register on the official e-tendering website. After the verification process, the system generates a unique user id and
password. Once the users receive the login details via email, they are requested to change their password when they first login. The system allows the users to change their password at their convenience.
The Gas Authority of India Limited eprocurement module is user friendly and accessible to a vendor using a computer with an internet connection. Internet explorer version 6.0 or a higher version is recommended. In case the user is unable to access the GAIL e-procurement website, he/ she is recommended to check the firewall settings or whether the internet connection is via a proxy server. The pop-ups should be enabled for GAIL e-tendering URL and links for the bid documents.
Suppliers can easily search current bid invitations on the website. For Gas Authority of India Limited tenders, suppliers can create only one bid against one e-tender. Bidders can also remove their tender response documents until the time of tender closure. The online tender portal also has a feature which informs suppliers via email, when the buyer makes any changes to the bid invitation document. For GAIL tenders which are listed on the GAIL e-procurement website, the unpriced technical bids and price bids have to be submitted online.
To bid for the Gas Authority of India Limited tenders, it is mandatory for the vendor to buy a class 3 digital signature certificate. The bidder can buy the digital signature certificate online at his/ her convenience. A digital signature is a digital code which can be attached to an electronic document. The electronic signature uniquely identifies the sender. Similar to a written signature, the purpose of a digital signature is to verify the identity of the individual. The digital signature solution includes capturing the users digital signature, which is authorised and certified by an agency licensed by Controller of Certifying Authorities under the Ministry of Information Technology, Government of India. The solution is protected by a firewall which prevents unauthorised access to the system.
The login passwords of all registered users is encrypted, in the GAIL eprocurement system, at the database level. An additional security feature uses a 128 bit SSL certificate for communication between the browser and the web server.
Licensed certifying authorities operating under the Root Certifying Authority of India (RCAI), Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA) of India are authorised the sell digital signature certificates. The Gas Authority of India Limited e-tendering process is compliant with the Information Technology Act, 2000. A certifying authority (CA) is licensed third-party organisation which issues digital certificates. The certificates are used to create digital signatures and public-private key pairs. CAs guarantee the identity of the two users exchanging information during online transactions. CAs play a crucial role in data security and electronic commerce.