Wednesday, October 28, 2009
INDIAN bureaucrats stationed in various states may be asked to play a larger role to facilitate business and help India gaining its ranking in the global survey of ease of doing business. The message may be given in a meeting of state industry secretaries to be held on October 30 in New Delhi as regulatory issues pose as hurdles in starting a business in most parts of India. The meeting is convened in the backdrop of a recently commissioned study by the World Bank on "Doing Business (DB) in India" comparing major Indian cities in terms of ease of starting and operating businesses. While there is a need to simplify and reduce regulatory procedures, there are a number of best practices developed by different states which can be replicated without much difficulty and without significant allocation of resources, the study found. According to the study, if each state/city were to adopt the best practices available within the country, India’s rank would improve by as much as 55 positions in the global ranking, a department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) release said. The meeting to be held on coming Friday is expected to engage state bureaucrats in accelerating the process of industrial reforms in the country. From Old Files The Grace Commission, set up in 1982, was a major initiative of US President Reagan for securing government reform as desired by the private sector. It interviewed some 2000 businessmen to find out how wasteful and mismanaged they perceived the federal government. Some 2500 specific recommendations were provided by the Grace Commission for getting rid of wasteful programmes, removal of red tape, and divestiture of assets of the federal government, etc. which, it claimed, would save the government $424 billion in three years. These recommendations were controversial. However, the White House claimed later that 80% of the prospective savings could be achieved. (Reproduced from a report of India's 2nd Administrative Reform Commission) No personal comments in BoI BoI (Babus of India) will not provide a platform to pass personal comments on any bureaucrat. In response to babu blogger's post on "Who are ‘officials in the Indian Railway Board’ who took dollar bribe?" a number of anonymous comments were received in which senior officials were directly attacked. There were mentions of officials being solicited with prostitutes when they were on foreign tours. Those comments were rejected as they were not suitable for publication. It's hereby requested that no such comments should be sent, though anonymous comments on issues related to bureaucracy are always welcome.