Monday, November 23, 2009
NANDAN Nilekani, a corporate honcho now in government, is preferring to take bureaucrats, mainly IAS, on board for executing key managerial assignments in various offices of Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) which has begun the process of giving a unique identification number to each of 1 billion Indian citizens. Despite the government allowing UIDAI to recruit private sector, though on government salary and on contract basis, the UIDAI has preferred the route of recruiting bureaucrats at the rank of joint secretary and deputy secretary/director. The difficulty in getting right private sector people with government salary is believed to be one of the main handicaps of UIDAI of recruiting key managers from corporate world. To give a sense of government salary structure, a joint secretary with over 20 years of experiences gets a pay of Rs 37400-67000/-(Pay Band-4 in government language) with a grade pay of Rs 10000, and other parks like accommodation. People in power corridors, however, feel that UIDAI chairman Mr Nilekani wants a brigade of IAS officers to manage the show as they are well-equipped and most suitable to understand the complex government procedure to make this fl edging project a success. Though UIDAI is in pressing need of key people right away, the recruitment of government officers needs its own time, and once selected the said officer will have to be relieved by the concerned state. Poaching private sector managers and appointing them on contract basis could have been less time-consuming than recruiting bureaucrats. The UIDAI which will have its new office in LIC building in CP, New Delhi, is likely to have a back-hand set-up of technicians in Bangalore. Till now, seven government officers including Ram Sevak Sharma (Director General and Mission Director), Ms K Ganga, Deputy Director General and five deputy secretary or director level officers were recruited to the Authority. Three more officers is likely to be on board soon, and the process of recruitment for another 10 officers is underway, sources said.