Induction and Retention of Civil Servants – Narrative and Policy .

NARRATIVE:

The civil services are composed entirely of people inducted through the UPSC or various State services exams, exactly as they were during the British times, again within the rules written by them, no change or evolution. This system served the system for the British who looked for early age inductions so behavior could be modified, controlled, and training for public service be intense to meet these embedded aims.

The needs of independent India since inception were very different from those of the imperial power that ruled the country. The country needed, and needs even more so now, the best minds, diverse capability mix such as leadership qualities, detail oriented minds, analysists, operations capabilities, human resource capabilities, in short, the complete personality mix that go towards making effective teams and organization needs.

These are not necessarily those selected through rote learned exams, and while there can be arguments made for inducting young men and women, there can be no doubt, that for a mature organization such as the bureaucracy is meant to be, people from diverse education, experience and personality background who have already gained experience in the private or commercial sector, and who would add value from day one, must be brought into the governance narrative of the country. This can be a mix of permanent inductions or renewable contract based inductions. In either case, performance and integrity cannot be compromised.

The Rising India Party takes the position that India needs the best talent for its governance and the bureaucracy needs to be staffed with the best talent from across sectors at any given point of time.

Furthermore, while The Rising India Party proposes to retain some direct induction through exams and other revised selection parameters, this would form no more than 50% of bureaucracy induction. The balance would be found from wider recruitment from across the private sector.

India must drop all practices inherited from the long-gone British foreigner, stop copying the west, dig into its own deep wisdom and devise its own story, one that others follow, one that leads the world out of its current violent, dark divisive story into the light of Vasudeva Kutumbha.

POLICY:

The Rising India Party proposes that the recruitment and training model for the Indian civil services be reset along the following frame:  

  1. The current system of selection for civil services through competitive exam would be retained for the direct induction route but only for up to 50% of the required strength in the first instance with the following baseline changes.
  2. All candidates, would in addition to the written exams and interviews, be put through psychological assessments including psychometric profiling.
  3. The interviews would be polygraph assisted to ensure that candidates are of requisite integrity and background displaying the right value systems prior to selection.
  4. The family backgrounds of all candidates would be thoroughly screened using the State’s intelligence services for a four-level clearance. If required, private investigators would be inducted for such background checks.
  5. All those who are selected in the civil services, Central or State, would be treated for training and posting as follows:
  6. The IAS candidates who have been selected would be put through training which, currently, is for a period of two years. This training frame would be thoroughly examined for assessing changes that are needed and be reset to one that is updated to meet with current realities.
  7. The training period would be split into two phases, wherein Phase I would remain close to the current frame with requisite changes and Phase II would have an extended field experience which would be tailored to and for each level but all would include intense experience in and with rural populations and disadvantaged populations.
  8. This phase of the training would include familiarization with the lower socio-economic strata, identifying reasons of why they are in the state they are in, preparing their need-assessment narrative and designing plans or strategies including inputs required to get them moving out of their disadvantaged states of life.
  9. The current practice of posting officers after only two years of training at ages between 24-28, directly as District magistrates at young ages after their two-year training would be dispensed with immediately.
  10. It is quite incredible that youngsters, who are hardly out of the cradle of university, have no means of coping with the power and consequent ego-charge of lording it over an entire population, including over mature professionals, entrepreneurs, businessmen with substantial businesses, are dropped as “kings and queens” of Districts
  11.  The new training and induction frame of direct inductees after the two-year training period would be that these officers would have to spend upto five years in base level, exposure at various levels including amongst rural populations, corporate sector internships at varying levels and positions.
  12. These would include, for appropriate levels and positions, exposure of living and working in village clusters and being responsible for in actual fact assessing the scenarios of the village clusters and development programs that need to be implemented.
  13. They would need to go and spend a year of internship with the corporate, in the corporate sector or two years of internship in the corporate sector, to understand how the commercial world functions and the needs and problems of the commercial world.
  14. they would then have to spend additional times likewise working and living amongst artisans and others identified root level socio economic functioning across the diversity including exposure in banks, including exposure in stock market, obviously different frame for different officials.
  15. In other words, an aspiring IAS officers through the direct induction route would need to have spent at least seven years of baseline functioning before such a person can be posted as district magistrate, at age 30 plus,
  16. Only the very brightest and strongest who make it would be pushed through to the senior positions.
  17. The rest would continue to function at levels serving useful roles but would not move to senior positions till they are fully assessed as being ready for command.
  18. Similar principles would apply to the IPS, IFS, IRS and other services within the central and state government domains, the operational frames of which would be worked out for each of these in due course.


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