Take decisions, I'll back you: PM Modi to secretaries

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Ray, Jun 5, 2014.

  1. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

    Apr 17, 2009
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    Take decisions, I'll back you: PM Modi to secretaries

    New Delhi: In a first, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday met the secretaries of all the government departments collectively and asked them to take decisions without fear.

    It was reported that while Modi asked the secretaries to approach him directly to resolve issues and expedite decision-making, he also told them to take decisions and assured his full support.

    He also "encouraged the officers to take decisions and assured them that he would stand by them," an official statement later said.

    The PM further asked the bureaucrats to simplify and streamline administrative rules and procedures in order to make them people-friendly, while expressing full faith in their commitment and competence to build a better future for the country.

    He said that "there may be rules and processes which have become outdated, and instead of serving the process of governance, they are leading to avoidable confusion" and stressed upon the need to "identify and do away with such archaic rules and procedures".

    During the marathon two-and-a-half hour meeting, Modi "listened extensively" to the top bureaucrats and empathized with their sentiments while noting their anguish in not being able to realize their true potential because of "circumstances".

    The intent behind the meeting was to give the bureaucracy a greater role in decision-making with thrust on transparency and speedy and effective governance.

    To ensure that implementation of decisions and programmes are not stuck in 'red-tape', the PM asked secretaries to call him or email him directly for suggestions or intervention required in resolving issues or expediting decisions, sources said.

    During the meeting, first by a Prime Minister directly with all the secretaries without ministers, Modi made initial remarks and then asked secretaries to raise issues.

    About 25 secretaries spoke on the sectoral issues under their responsibility.

    "Discussions focussed more on making governance more effective," a source said.

    In all, 77 top bureaucrats, including Finance Secretary Arvind Mayaram, Home Secretary Anil Goswami, Defence Secretary Radha Krishna Mathur and Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh, were called for the meeting.

    Sources said 16 groups were formed by clubbing related ministries. All finance ministry departments were grouped together, while secretaries of energy-related departments - power, coal, oil, mines and atomic energy were put together.

    Agriculture and related departments were clubbed under one head, while the infrastructure group comprised of railways, telecom, roads, civil aviation, shipping and posts.

    The sources said the Prime Minister illustrated what kind of work he expected them to perform. No presentation was made by the secretaries.

    Cabinet Secretary Ajit Seth made the inital remarks. After that those who spoke included Finance Secretary Arvind Mayaram, Power Secretary P K Sinha, Heavy Industries Secretary Sutanu Behuria and DoPT Secretary S K Sarkar, the sources said.

    Previously, the secretaries had been asked to prepare a 10-minute presentation for the Prime Minister listing successes and failures of the past regime as well as points of action for the next five years. That process may start tomorrow.

    Notes of Finance Ministry officials for the meeting included inflation, fiscal consolidation, controlling the current account deficit, clarity on tax administration and disinvestment in non-core sectors like steel and cement.

    Liberalising the FDI policy in defence, e-commerce retail, railways and construction development and hurdles in land acquisition and cumbersome project clearances topped the agenda of Commerce Secretary Rajeev Kher.

    Updates on the monsoon and a new insurance scheme to protect farmers from crop failure figured on Agriculture Secretary Ashish Bahuguna's notes, while the consumer affairs department was concerned about rising onion prices.

    While the Oil Ministry went with a list of pending decisions, including an increase in natural gas prices which was due on April 1, the Power Ministry cited round-the-clock power supply and easing of fuel shortages as its top focus.

    Divestment of stake in PSUs such as SAIL and opening of closed mines were the focus areas for the steel and mines ministry.

    Take decisions, I`ll back you: PM Modi to secretaries

    It is a good sign that the bureaucrats are being allowed to take decision and thus held accountable, rather than being mere file pushers.

    Can 60 years plus attitude or file pushing change overnight?
  3. rock127

    rock127 Maulana Rockullah Senior Member

    Aug 12, 2009
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    This 60 year rule was done by ComCon and they would NOT like babus to be strong enough to carry the orders as per laws.

    No surprise ComCon is against this "Empowering the babus" as I saw it in today's Arnab's show. The Keshavan of ComCon kept blabbering that this way the power of ministers would be undermined.

    The issue is that babus are always in pressure from the ministers to deviate from their normal precedures and that's the base of corruption so it's obvious that ComCon is irritated that MODI is starting to challange the wrong practices which ComCon patronized and made it deep rooted.

    It would not be easy to uproot corruption overnight but MODI has taken a positive step to initiate it so lets see how it goes.
  4. iNDiAN.96

    iNDiAN.96 Nationalist Senior Member

    Oct 26, 2010
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    parijataka and jackprince like this.
  5. Hari Sud

    Hari Sud Senior Member Senior Member

    Mar 31, 2012
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    Wish to be de-sanitize the Babus diaspora of inefficient and corrupt. They were part of that corrupt and money grabbing political system of last ten years.
  6. Energon

    Energon DFI stars Stars and Ambassadors

    Jun 3, 2009
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    This is good news. If Modi is proven to be effective he may very well revolutionize Indian politics altogether because people may realize that majority governments are better than fractured coalitions.

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