Neo-liberal path of development loaded in favour of privatization, and accumulation of wealth in fewer hands has to be moderated with pro-people political interventions- Dr Promod Kumar
Chandigarh, December 27, 2019: Big contractors involved in the implementation of the welfare schemes are neither questioned by the legislature nor by the media.
These were the views expressed by Dr. Naresh Chandra Saxena, IAS (Retd.), Former Director, Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA), Mussoorie, and Former Member of the National Advisory Council, in a lecture "Challenges of Governance: The Way Out" organized at the Institute for Development and Communication, Sector 38A, Chandigarh.
Dr. Saxena elaborated that the bureaucracy literally fails at that point where it has to deal directly with the people, whereas, wherever the contractors or agencies are involved in implementation of a particular scheme, bureaucracy performs well.
He raised the issue of flawed designs of the safety net programmes by the government and that most of the data presented by the public authorities is fudged, causing gap between the reported and the evaluated data.
He lamented that inequalities are rising not only among the rich and the poor but also among the States leading to rise in vulnerabilities and tensions.
India should rather adopt the Malaysian model where the government gives money directly to the industry than to the individuals for training and employing their citizens. Furthering his arguments, he stated that, States having less poverty in India are spending more money on poverty eradication programmes.
For urban areas, focus of the government should be on rental housing for the urban poor. He also stressed that the average number of days of sitting per year in the Punjab assembly comes out to be only 19 days which is very less and need to be increased.
Mr. Gurbachan Jagat, Former Governor of Manipur and Chairman Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) said that while development costs money, good governance costs 'no naya paisa'. He highlighted how the element of politics turns the brightest of the civil servants to remain a ruled class.
He further appreciated the institutions such as UPSC which have stood to the test of the time and has sustained its significance and existence.
He shared his administrative experiences since being a young police officer till appointment as a Governor and challenges posed at various levels. He stressed that if politicians want, things can move really faster.
Dr. Pramod Kumar, Director, Institute for Development and Communication, mentioned that the neo-liberal path of development loaded in favour of privatization, and accumulation of wealth in fewer hands has to be moderated with pro-people political interventions.
For this, the state has to reinvent itself to stand on the side of the poor. This is a long haul. The governance architecture have to formulate institutionalized interventions to moderate the callousness of the market.
Dr. Chandan Awasthi welcomed the participants and shared his ideas on governance.