Thursday, July 30, 2015

Midnight Reshuffle: 36 new additional secretaries appointed; water ministry to have a new mission director’s post

IN A mid-night senior bureaucratic reshuffle, the Centre announced appointment of 36 officers, all ranked additional secretaries to Government of India. Major appointments include 1985 batch Punjab cadre IAS Arun Goel as vice-chairman of Delhi Development Authority (DDA), 1985 batch Telangana cadre IAS Pushpa Subrahmanyam as Development Commissioner (Handicrafts) and 1985 batch Karnataka cadre IAS Yogendra Tripathy as CMD of Food Corporation of India (FCI). One Indian Economic Service officer and one Indian Revenue Service (IT) officer are the two non-IAS officers who have managed to get berths as additional secretaries. Here are the 36 appointments:

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

“Hang corrupt IAS officers in India Gate, but…”- a fascinating talk by 1994 batch IAS Srivatsa Krishna

Srivatsa Krishna, 1994 batch Karnataka cadre IAS officer and one of the most articulate voices of the elite Indian Administrative Service says there are many honest IAS officers undertaking tough jobs away from media limelight, though there are some who are corrupt.  Hang corrupt officers in India Gate, but don't tar everyone with the same brush, says Krishna while addressing a gathering of young entrepreneurs in Bengaluru recently for a TV show titled…

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

RIP APJ Abdul Kalam: How IAS, IPS, IFS officers remember this former President

Joint Secretary Usha Padhee with Kalam (File photo)
WHEN the news surfaced on Monday evening that India’s Missile Man and former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam died in Shillong aged 83, a number of sitting and former bureaucrats took to social media platform to express their condolences, narrating their earlier associations with the man who dreamed big for the nation. 1996 batch IAS Usha Padhee released her photo with Kalam. Read more to know about the IAS who received his graduation certificate from Dr Kalam, the IFS officer who once organized Kalam’s visit to Sydney and the officer who chose to tweet a Sanskrit verse on Kalam's farewell:

Monday, July 27, 2015

Does “sir culture” hinder openness and innovation in government? Young officers say, yes it does

FOR many a young professional joining as IAS, the first challenge in adapting to the sarkari culture is the very use of the word “sir”. Many wonder, why can’t a two-year senior officer be called by the first name or by his or her surname? So, it’s not surprising that one of the young IAS officers, currently undergoing training in Mussoorie academy, took to a social media site last week to say “too much formalism” in IAS is not good for the fraternity, adding that the "sir culture" is against innovation in governance. Meet this…

Friday, July 24, 2015

States to spend Rs 2.25 lakh for each promoted IAS for Sri Lanka visit, other domestic tours

Destination Sri Lanka (Photo Courtesy: Anton Croos) 
STATE governments of Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu will spend Rs 2.25 lakh for each of the promoted IAS officer who is undertaking a six-week-long induction programme that begins on July 27 at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA), Mussoorie. As many as 36 state administrative officers from those four states will be imparted training under which a foreign visit (this time to…

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Nitish Thakur: The Maha babu who owns two dozen properties, a Land Rover, a Mercedes and more

THE Enforcement Directorate’s Mumbai arm on Wednesday attached properties and bank fixed deposits worth Rs 56 crore in a money laundering case against Nitish Thakur, former deputy collector of Maharashtra Housing Area Development Authority (Mhada). This is in addition to last year’s ED attachment of assets worth Rs 53.57 crore from this state administrative service officer. Read more about this official who owns  two dozen bungalows and flats in Mumbai, and used to drive a Land Rover and a Mercedes.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

You need just 50% to crack IAS exam; but don’t think it’s a doddle

WHEN high cut-off marks (even 100%?) for admission in Delhi University was the talk of the town last month, did anyone realize that many of those brilliant students would ultimately aspire to score just 50% or a little more in UPSC-conducted civil services examinations in a few years from now and turn IAS, IFS, IPS etc.? Sounds odd, but yes, you need just 50% marks to become an IAS, clearly showing how difficult the examination is. The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), the agency which conducts the year-long examination, on Tuesday made public the…

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Foreign Companies, Desi Agents and Government Officials: Modus operandi of bribing bureaucrats to procure contracts

BRIBING of Indian government officials by foreign companies has come to the fore once again after the US Justice Department said last week that New Jersey-based construction management company Louis Berger International Inc (LBI) bribed officials in India and a few other countries to secure government contracts that included water projects in Goa and Guwahati. The total bribe paid in August 2010 for securing the Goa project alone amounted to USD 9,76,630 (Rs 6.2 crore according to current exchange rate). But what was the modus operandi deployed in bribing officials? According to the ruling of the United States district court of New Jersey, (USA Vs Louis Berger International Inc Criminal Complaint Mag. No. 15-3624, MF), the company concerned "did create...

Monday, July 20, 2015

Why Make in India succeeds when some other sarkari campaigns fizzle out; 5 Reasons

Amitabh Kant with Make in India Lion
DURING the last 14 months, NDA government at the Centre has launched a number of high-voltage campaigns -- Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Mission), Pradhan Mantri Jandhan Yojana (accident and life insurance of Rs 2 lakh on a Rs 12 premium), Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (save and educate the girl child), Digital India and Skill India. Now, just close your eyes and try to recollect the symbol of each of those campaigns. And then try the same for another campaign of the Modi government -- Make in India. By now, you must have figured out the lion, to be precise a walking lion. You must have also failed to…

Friday, July 17, 2015

Sometime, there can be action against an official facing sexual harassment complaint even without inquiry, says DoPT Step Guide

DISCIPLINARY authority conducting an inquiry in sexual harassment complaints is allowed to dispense with inquiry, and action may be taken against the government official without inquiry when the authority concludes that it is not reasonably practicable to hold such an inquiry because of threats or intimidation, according to provisions laid down by a new guide on “Steps for Conduct of Inquiry in complaints of Sexual Harassment”, prepared by the department of personnel and training (DoPT), Government of India. Action without inquiry could be possible if…