Advertisement
Wednesday, Oct 27, 2021
Outlook.com

Bureaucracy: Babus Versus Idiot Savants

The bureaucracy needs private-sector culture more than private-sector honchos

Bureaucracy: Babus Versus Idiot Savants
Bureaucracy: Babus Versus Idiot Savants
outlookindia.com
2018-06-30T12:44:31+05:30

The recent decision of the Centre on lateral entry has injected raw energy into a stale debate about generalists versus specialists in the bureaucracy. With both the ‘pro’ and the ‘anti’ campaigners digging in their heels, the high-decibel fractured debate has generated more noise than signal. Naysayers see this move to induct ‘outsiders’ into joint secretary (JS) posts, the government’s very spine, as the fall of the last frontier. Besides seeing it as lack of trust in their talent and ability to perform, they point to the inherent conflict of interest and the fear that profit-hungry, sharp-elbowed, corporate lickspittle will hijack the administration. They say running the government is serious business and requires more than idiot savants, while the Left sees a grand conspiracy to saffronise the bureaucracy through the backdoor.

To those on the other side, the hulking bureaucracy stuck in 19th-century thinking, is at the heart of governance dysfunction and choking India’s growth. In popular imagination, the bureaucracy is inefficient, antediluvian and mired in a maze of rules created to confound, while all iconic transformative stories—the white and green revolutions, the space programme and Aadhaar—are of specialists achieving results despite the bureaucracy. No wonder this is seen as a comeuppance moment.

Read Also: Modi's Move On Bureaucrats A Ploy To Get RSS Men Into Administration: Oppn

Ironically, both views are small-‘t’ truths. Lateral induction is no terra ­incognita for the government—Manmohan Singh, Vijay Kelkar, Bimal...

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Aryan Khan Drug Case: Bombay HC Adjourns Hearing Of Bail Petition Till Tomorrow

Aryan Khan Drug Case: Bombay HC Adjourns Hearing Of Bail Petition Till Tomorrow

Justice Sambre has once again adjourned the hearing. The Bombay High Court will hear the petitions of Aryan Khan, Arbaaz Merchant and Munmun Dhamecha tomorrow afternoon after 2.30 pm.

Mandi Bypoll: 'Do They Want Me To Become Sati?', Asks Congress Candidate Pratibha Singh

Mandi Bypoll: 'Do They Want Me To Become Sati?', Asks Congress Candidate Pratibha Singh

Pratibha Singh talks about her decision to contest the poll and carry forward the legacy of ‘Raja Sahib’, ex-Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh.

T20 World Cup: Jason Roy 50, Bowlers Help England Humble Bangladesh

T20 World Cup: Jason Roy 50, Bowlers Help England Humble Bangladesh

With this win, England have two victories from as many matches while Bangladesh lost both their Super 12 ties.

Pegasus Snooping Row: SC Cites 'Right To Privacy', Appoints 3-Member Probe Panel

Pegasus Snooping Row: SC Cites 'Right To Privacy', Appoints 3-Member Probe Panel

Stressing on the right to privacy, CJI Ramana said it was incumbent upon the Centre to seriously consider the use of such a technology.

Advertisement