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2017 batch IPS officer-trainees with President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, in New Delhi on October 12.

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Thursday, September 01, 2016

A bureaucrat must not be “an expert in setting up roadblocks”; Full text of what John Kerry said on Indian bureaucracy

John Kerry
Red Tapism of Indian bureaucracy has always been criticized by people across fields, but here is what US secretary of state John Kerry had to say about Indian bureaucracy on Wednesday. “Anybody’s bureaucracy has to become more streamlined and effective. It has to become a partner in making decision, not an expert in setting up roadblocks”, Kerry said while speaking at a town hall in IIT-Delhi on Wednesday arguing how bureaucrats had to partner entrepreneurs in ensuring India's growth even faster. Kerry argues that Indian entrepreneurs “must need the freedom to pursue new ideas, the ability to start up new businesses without a lot of red tape…”. BoI here presents an excerpt of Kerry’s 40-minute-long speech, particularly the portion where he talked about bureaucracy:

Excerpts:
“Even as we have seen impressive gains in India’s economic growth, there are still a question of whether or not we are doing so quickly enough. And that comes down to a very basic arithmetic. In order to just keep pace, India has to create 13 million jobs a year. By any standard that’s an enormous task. And to meet that goal your entrepreneurs like the young people trained here in IIT-Delhi urgently need the freedom to pursue new ideas, the ability to start up new businesses without a lot of red tape, and access to infrastructure that makes it easier to translate fresh concepts into successful companies. 
Any business in today’s world has to operate under the conditions that attract investment capital — whether it’s foreign capital or domestic capital. And capital seeks opportunities. It seeks stability. It seeks certainty. It seeks transparency and accountability. 
You have to have a market that is defined by fairness and transparency. You have to have a level playing field. You have to have a sense of regulation. 
And anybody’s bureaucracy has to become more streamlined and effective. It has to become a partner in making decision, not an expert in setting up roadblocks. 
All of us make policies. We do it in the United States. We have to adopt policies faster. And here you have to do it in a way that provide opportunities for all Indians— men and women, urban and rural, farmers and workers in any industry”

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