Beginning of the license raj, even and before that the Bureaucracy has devised various ways to harm the national interest. It is more apt to say that the Bureaucracy has devised ingenious method to harm the national interest and manipulate in a manner that the ultimate blame lie on the politicians and the government. 26/11 was not a policy failure, it was the failure of the people not to be able to, not to be willing to and not having the capability to implement policies in national interest.
It is indeed an irony that the country’s economy has grown up, looked up, brightened up and moving forward. Despite all we may not have tasted development, but at least we are tasting growth, and all this despite the bureaucracy. Indian economy is growing at a rate of over 7% despite the bureaucracy. The bureaucracy has not managed the aviation sector despite the enormous inertia being available by way of Air India….. so what ? Aviation sector developed without that. The bureaucracy has almost completely devastated the Shipping Industry……. so what ? Indian exports have picked up. HEC, Ranchi and other public sector units have fallen from grace……. so what ? a lot of state-of-the-art industrial centres have come up that mock HEC. Every road-block the Bureaucracy can put up, despite that the road transport has shown growth – qualitative as well as quantitative. The Indian film industry has grown in universal appeal despite the bureaucracy; the quality of education (read information and literacy) has improved at least quantitatively if not value wise………despite the bureaucracy. If so many things have shown an improvement inspite of obstacles put by bureaucracy then its left to anyone’s imagination what would have happened with a responsive, efficient bureaucracy having a feeling for the country. The country’s economy would have shown a progress unparallel in the whole of Asia.
A fall out of the existing corruption and red tapism is very detrimental to the Indian economy in the long run, as foreign investors in a rapidly global, economies of the world view entering into India as a challenge and plagued as it remains both with political and bureaucratic corruption as well systematic inefficiency which leads to long turn around period as project delays cause cost escalations in volatile market economies. Also in the recent years, several corrupt economies of Asia have faced setbacks, after the wave of economic upturn faded, this makes the urgency of corrective measures more than evident, they make it an imperative.
The only asset we have with ourself is our demographic dividend and time to take our country into 21st century with dignity. The bureaucracy with dilatory tactics and tapism more than capable of not only damaging but super damaging the economy.
Bureaucracy shows every ability, willingness and zeal to damage the psyche of the people and they have not only reasonably dented it, but are inflicting more and more damage to it.
The greatest damage is by way of allowing people they serve to make them perceive as dispensing favours rather than really serving them. They behave as Indian Administrative Masters rather than servants. Given the abject poverty and illiteracy, a culture of exaggerated deference to authority has become the norm. Obviously, this approach is not citizencentric. The reasons for the government not being citizencentric is primarily attributed to the attitude and work of the bureaucracy. Of course, there are other factors that are also responsible, such as the deficiencies in the existing institutional structures and also to some citizens.
Once selected and also by virtue of training, their company, the pressure by the peer group, not to speak of the constitutional protection, just as they get into the bureaucracy they start feeling superior, and in order to maintain that superiority they start suppressing any new idea, new innovation and consequently the rise of any talent. The emergence of any new talent undermines the brand IAS. The degree and amount of innovation promotion that the government thinks of, hardly gets implemented.
Unlikely to appreciate and encourage talent merely by being facilitator, the bureaucracy is often rude and insulting by showing an ignominious attitude. This is not only very derogatory to the citizens, it discourage them to no end. Having not stopped at deriving pleasure out of it, they continue in whatever capacity they can truly mindful of the consequence it is likely to have on the masses.
Innovation diffusion and management propels any civilisation toward a new sense of perception, new balance of perception, building new institutions, facilitates new institutions, new fresh thinking as well as prevent the death and decay of old institutions. Institution-building should have been more smooth, more progressive, more global as well as adhering to the roots of preservation of local wisdom, local cultures. Unfortunately this sense of responsibility towards the country and the humanity had not found in the workings of the bureaucrats. This only showed lack of love for the country and/or its people, as well as its past.
One pitfall of such a suppression of is the loss of opportunity for the general masses for the citizens. Indeed the bureaucracy wants to scuttle out any existence of opportunity which can allow the citizens to reach some height of success. They simply do not want to facilitate any equality of opportunity.
While the laws made by the Legislature may be sound and relevant, very often they are not properly implemented by the bureaucracy. The institutional structure provided at times may be also weak and ill-conceived, and thus, has neither the capacity nor the resource to implement the laws in letter and spirit.
“The system often suffers from problems of excessive centralisation and policies and action plans are far removed from the needs of the citizens. This results in a mismatch between what is required and what is being provided.”
Even the commission observed that the civil services and administration in general had become “wooden, inflexible, self perpetuating and inward looking.” “Consequently their attitude is one of indifference and insensitivity to the needs of citizens. This, coupled with the enormous asymmetry in the wielding of power at all levels, has further aggravated the situation.
The argument that the IAS serves to promote the unity and integrity of the Indian nation, transcending cleavages and differences which form the basis for states’ identities, seems much less convincing in the contemporary situation than it might have been at independence. The contribution of the All-India Services to cementing or safeguarding the Union cannot be reckoned as crucial, compared with the historical, political and cultural factors which make Indians feel that they belong to the same nation, whatever their differences. The efforts to make the higher civil service more representative through reservations are limited to a purely quantitative approach to national integration and do not transcend the social, religious and ethnic cleavages that divide Indian society. How could an elite administration itself affected by casteism, communalism and regionalism offer the perspective of a collective quest for common goals?
The IAS officers form a powerful lobby at the national level, and they will certainly resist any proposal that threatens their position, even when the objective is to make them more accountable to the public, especially by removing the constitutional protection given to them. The officers who fail in their mission to public service, the openly corrupt, the partisan, still enjoy the security of tenure guaranteed to them by the Constitution, which makes their dismissal very difficult. The partisanship of high-level civil servants goes against their mission of national integration. If nothing is done to increase the effectiveness of the IAS as a binding force of the country, and if, instead of contributing to national unity, its members deepen even more the existing social cleavages by their partiality, then the whole institution loses its raison d’etre.
When George Fernandes was the Defence Minister, he came across a very insensitive response of the bureaucracy. The soldiers of Siachen had applied for snow scooter to have a vigil on the borders in the most hostile atmosphere along the LOC. The request lay with the bureaucracy for five years before it came to the notice of George Fernandes, that too when he himself once had the chance of visiting the region and came to realise the harsh realities. The bureaucracy was debating over the need for snow scooters for the armed forces for five years, and many soldiers lost their lives due to frost biting and cold.
If the Administration Services keeps the progress of the country to ransom, sit over the files catering to the supply of essential snow scooters to the Siachen soldiers, who protect the country, try to humiliate armed forces, reduce the dignity of the country as country’s representative on a flight by entering into drunken brawl and trying to molest air hostesses; disrespect country’s past and its culture, its people and population, advocate the same British who did not disguise their hatred of the country and its people, and propagate British form of culture by not pressing in censor for the choicest Anglo-Saxon “gaalis” and blanch at a word “saali”, meanwhile faithfully allow the enemy countries to encircle India, despite knowing very well of its consequences or totally mindful of its consequences……..This is where, China has been bullying us right now.
Any organization, any institution, any business-house, or any service, which indulges in such a despicable deed, for all of them, the question is ……. Will any one do that if they love their country, and everyone will do that who are, “I, Me. Myself”