[Yojana September 2023 Summary]Administrative Reforms-Explained Pointwise

In the last decade India has undertaken several transformational administrative reforms bringing the government and citizens closer. As India celebrated its 75th year of Independence as Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, the Prime Minister has given a clarion call for the adoption of next-generation administrative reforms for Viksit Bharat.

What have been the transformational administrative reforms brought by govt in the Last Decade?

In the last decade, the administrative reforms were driven by the government’s maxim of “Minimum Government-Maximum Governance”.

            Major Administrative reforms implemented in the last Decade
E-Governance ModelsIndia’s public institutions have been transformed into fully digital institutions. The Central
Government’s e-Governance models like
Ayushman Bharat, PM’s Jan Arogya Yojana, PM’s Jan Dhan Yojana, One Nation One Ration Card and Passport Sewa Kendras have been successful in bringing transparency and openness to government processes.
Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS)Online web-enabled system developed by National Informatics Centre (Ministry of Electronics & IT [MeitY]), in association with Directorate of Public Grievances (DPG) and Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG). It provides the facility to lodge a grievance online from any geographical location. It enables the citizen to track online the grievance and also enables DARPG to monitor the grievance.
e-Samikshareal time online system for monitoring and follow-up action on the decisions taken by the Government at the Apex level in respect of implementation of important Government programmes/projects. Govt has been using this platform to weed out inefficient Officers through premature retirement.
Good Governance Index This index has been launched by the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions. It provide quantifiable data to compare the state of governance in all States and Union Territories(UTs).
Citizen ChartersIt is a written document that specifies the commitment of the organisation towards fulfilling the needs of the citizens/customers. Citizen Charters for all Ministries/Departments which are updated and reviewed on a regular basis.
National Conference on e-GovernanceIt provides a platform for the government to engage with experts, intellectuals from industry and academic institutions to exchange experiences relating to e-Governance initiatives.
Mission KarmayogiMission Karmayogi is part of National Programme for Civil Services Capacity Building (NPCSCB). It aims to build a future-ready civil service with the right attitude, skills and knowledge which is aligned to the vision of New India.
Lateral EntryInduction of personnel from the private sector to the administrative post of the government.Lateral Entry helps in bringing the values of economy, efficiency and effectiveness in the Government sector because the personnel are not part of the bureaucratic setup.

Read More-CPGRAMS Forum IAS,Lateral Entry Forum IAS

What are the next generation administrative reforms proposed for Vikshit Bharat?

Next Generation reforms are aimed at organisational reforms. These next generational organisational reforms when coupled with the already implemented reforms will make a Viksit Bharat as envisaged by the Prime Minister.

Next Generation administrative reforms
Benchmarking GovernanceAll the Governance indices like the Good Governance Index(GGI),National e-governance service delivery Assessment(NeSDA) Framework must be expanded to all the states, UTs to benchmark governance.
Secretariat ReformsIncreasing efficiency in decision-making of secretariat by focussing on delayering, delegation of financial powers, adoption of e-office, swachhata campaigns for weeding out irrelevant files and minimisation of pendency.
Chintan ShivirEvery Ministry should conduct internal, in
house deliberations to take a fresh look at their
governance models by conducting regular Chintan Shivirs.
Restructuring of award Prime Minister’s for Excellence in AdministrationThe restructured programme aims at inclusion of priority programs of the government. Its objective is to encourage constructive competition, innovation, replication
and institutionalisation of best practices.

What is the significance of administrative reforms in India?

Administrative Reforms
Source-World Bank

Efficient delivery of Government service – In recent times with the technological advances, decentralisation and social activism people’s expectations of efficient delivery of government service has increased. These reforms help us fulfill these expectations.

Ensures transparency, accountability and rule of law-Administrative reforms ensures transparency, accountability and rule of Law. Fulfillment of these three objectives are of utmost necessity to develop a Viksit Bharat.

 Enhancement of govt capacity – These reforms enhance the capacity of governments to carry out core government functions. This enhanced capacities are of particular importance in times of natural calamities, hazards and COVID.

Propels the pace of economic development-The removal of Red Tapism, bureaucratic hurdles in clearance of licences helps in the economic development of the country.

What are the challenges in administrative reforms in India?

Assured promotion system – Assured promotion irrespective of performance deters young officers from taking new and innovative initiatives as they have fixed hierarchy of promotions. 

Prevalence of the ‘transfer industry’-In most of the states, the principle of three years regular tenure of civil servants is not followed. These frequent transfers hamper the implementation of any comprehensive reforms.

Uneven utilisation of talent-There is dominance of few elite services in promotions, work allocations and assignments. Most of the coveted positions in the government are taken over by the elite services, which result in uneven utilisation of talent and adversely affect the morale of other services. For instance, specialist services like Indian Revenue Services, Indian Economic Services do not get adequate opportunities and representation in the work.

Red Tapism (Delay) and indecisiveness-This exists in many forms with the civil services. For example, regular queries by the superiors and delay in taking decisions. Sometimes it is necessary to take the opinion of the Ministry of Law or Ministry of Finance for taking an appropriate financial decision. All this delays the decision-making process.

Less Public Service Workforce – Only 4% of India’s workforce comprise public servants as compare to 22. 5% in the UK, 13.5% in the US and 28% in China.

Corruption nexuses-Corruption has become part of the bureaucratic machinery of India. The existence of corruption is a major challenge for initiating in any bureaucratic reforms.

What should be the way forward?

Mid-Career Appraisals-Mid-career appraisals should be conducted to weed out inept officers, and it should be done alongside finding meritorious replacements through lateral entry.

Reformation of state govt public employment policies-State governments must also reform public employment policies as combined employment of states is much more than GoI and state bureaucracy’s interface with the ordinary citizen is much larger.

National Programme for Civil Services Capacity Building – This is aimed at reshaping the post recruitment training mechanisms and GoI’s HR policies.

Read More- Administrative reforms The Indian Express

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