10 June 2021 ~ 0 Comments

As Centre-state crossfire builds up, morale sinks

The instances of bureaucrats getting caught in the middle of political battles is a growing and dynamic list. Those in the know say that after the Centre recently amended the empanelment policy for IAS officers, young officers fear that their careers will be jeopardized if there is no political consensus between the Centre and the concerned state government.

Under the revised policy, the Centre has made the Central deputation of two years mandatory for IAS officers before they complete the first 16 years of service in their cadre state to be eligible for joint secretary’s post in Delhi in the future. This would not be a problem if the Centre and state were ruled by the same party. The problem arises, as in the case of West Bengal, when there are ruled by bitter political foes. The babus are caught in a bind. Whether this is an inevitable feature of Federalism isn’t clear yet, but babu nervousness isn’t something that helps with better administration in these perilous times.

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