[Answered] Comment on the need and methods to equip IAS officers to become much more effective in dealing with the manufacturing sector as well as other areas of development.

Introduction: Contextual introduction.

Body: Explain need and methods to equip IAS officers to become much more effective in dealing with the manufacturing sector as well as other areas of development.

Conclusion: Write a way forward.

Recently, India became the world’s fifth largest economy by overtaking the United Kingdom. Now, the United States, China, Japan, and Germany are the only nations with economies larger than India’s.

Need to equip IAS officers in developmental areas:

  • There has been policy related issues that are blocking rapid growth of the manufacturing sector.
  • To become an attractive destination for manufacturing investment, India needs to solve the issues, which is making it a difficult country to manufacture and do business.
  • The development of manufacturing is only possible if the concerned civil servants in the ministries have good manufacturing domain knowledge.
  • IAS officers need to know how to add to or reduce the costs of manufacturing, create demand for enabling industry to achieve economies of scale, and generation of profits and internal resources for growth.

Methods to equip IAS officers:

  • It requires reforms in our system of human resource development and bringing it in line with the best global practices.
  • A new wing should be created in the Department of Personnel & Training, and its counterparts in the states. This wing should be responsible to select officers on the basis of aptitude from the IAS and other services, and train them. It should report directly to the Prime Minister to insulate it from pressures from various quarters.
  • The selection of officers could be made after they have completed around 10 years of service. Thereafter, selected officers would need to be trained and given postings to gain more knowledge and experience.
  • For knowledge and experience, a temporary appointment to selected private companies should be made. It would acquaint officers to market based competition and select companies in different manufacturing sectors could be able to trust the government officers.
  • The Japanese model was to de-link salary scales from job responsibilities. It means the most suitable person for the job will be posted for higher responsibilities. However, her/his pay scale will not change due to this.

While the political leadership lays down the vision, the responsibilities for translating these into ground realities are that of IAS officers.

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