Massive Egos Of The Indian Bureaucrats

Vineeth
March 22nd 2021

Their props begin with their bulky offices, swivel chairs, and obligatory white towels, changed daily and draped on the back for unknown reasons. Red lights flash on the office doors to highlight the importance of the offices. For decades, white towels have become an undisputed symbol of bureaucratic authority that the right does not challenge. They are inaccessible to the ordinary people who queue outside their offices to resolve their complaints and wait an entire day before seeing Sahib. [Sources: 3] 
    
Corrupt and inefficient officials may be the best of the ACRs, but most bureaucrats have no authority in administration, not even in development. For merit, look at the ACRS "confidential annual report, the performance review. Unlike a politician who goes to the electorate every five years to get a vote on his performance appraisal, bureaucrats get promotions based on seniority, defined by retirement age, and they rarely do their performance reviews because the report is administered by someone else. If bureaucrats make ACRS their norm, it will do no harm if they are rated 8 out of 10 in the report, and the chain goes on year after year, badge after badge. [Sources: 1]  (ACR: Annual Confidential Report)
    
The professional damage to bureaucrats caused by arbitrary and frequent transfers, the considerable damage to the common good, and the rewards for compliant and corrupt bureaucrats for undermining public morality are incalculable. Occasionally, when there is a conflict between bureaucrats "political demands and the legal and rational approach based on the rule of law, bureaucrats pay a modest price for postponement. In extreme cases, they pay the ultimate price by losing life and limb. The recent brutal murder of a senior engineer in Uttar Pradesh by a lawmaker and his thugs for refusing to comply with demands for huge bribes, in December 2008, is a telling and tragic example of the potential risks faced by bureaucrats who do not play by the rules and refuse to cooperate. [Sources: 0] 
    
India's bureaucracy is the most inefficient and corrupt in the world. As their egos take shape, bureaucrats unleash red-tapism (killers of all kinds) upon one another. Without accountability, they use silence as a weapon of mass incompetence to avoid being forced to make decisions when things go wrong. [Sources: 7] 
    
Most of the political class, in turn, blame the Babus. While Neta is accountable to the population, Babu is accountable only to himself. The great bad Babu is accountable only to the political classes, and every time accountability is measured in Neta's own time, new accountability for him only comes when he is distracted by the quagmire of popular vote-management politics. [Sources: 7] 
    
Take, for example, the self-respecting young idealistic policewoman in Karnataka, who was removed from her post for daring to hang up her phone. The ego is not just an Indian trait. Our children have them, and our politicians are a good example of that. Our respect for Mata Pita, Guru, and Deivam drives the demand that our elders, teachers, and bosses listen to them and not ask questions. Of course, one does not have to listen to everyone, but respect for God drives the ego, especially the religious. [Sources: 2] 
    
It is important that we blame our bloated egos for poor performances. The Indian ego acts according to the time and place in which one speaks and is modeled on the idea of Dharma (morality). No prizes for guessing who decided on the morality of Dharma. [Sources: 2] 
    
The real problem with bureaucrats is not castes or reservations. If you are Indian, against all odds, it is impossible that you have not heard about how corrupt our bureaucracy is, and that Babu and Bathing Sahab are corrupt is nothing more than a public disgrace. [Sources: 5] 
    
The problem is not a political issue or a power struggle, but a class of bureaucrats who are selfish, arrogant, inhumane, corrupt, muddled, and shabby. Fair disclosure: I understand and acknowledge the fact that not all bureaucrats are corrupt. In fact, we have some exemplary civil servants who are an inspiration to us. But this post is not about them. It is about what is wrong with the Indian bureaucracy. [Sources: 5] 
    
Recently, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, the time-honored department in charge of the success of the Start-up India program, intends to hire the four major consulting firms to advise them on supporting entrepreneurs. We understand that Indian bureaucrats do not know what entrepreneurs need. A bunch of bureaucrats and a government that hires them as consultants to develop policies that help bureaucrats more than entrepreneurs. [Sources: 4] 
    
The Empowerment Group of Secretaries (EGO) is a panel of six high-ranking central government officials from economic ministries. It is headed by Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, India's longest-serving bureaucrat. The other members of the EGO are Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Ayog, Secretary of the Ministry of Industrial Promotion and Domestic Trade; Guruprasad Mohapatra from the Ministry of Commerce; Anup Wadhawan from the Ministry of Economy; Tarun Bajaj from the Ministry of Finance and Ajay Bhushan Pandey. [Sources: 6] 
    
The main task of the EGOs is to improve the investment environment in the country for both foreign and domestic investors. The secretaries of the respective Lines Ministries have co-opted some of the topics discussed by the panel. The Secretary of DPIIT is the organizer of this EGO. [Sources: 6] 
    
In the end, the Babus serve the Babus. To be a good Babu, you must do what the other Babu's do.
 
 
Sources:
    
[0]: https://www.india-seminar.com/2009/594/594_jayaprakash_narayan.htm
    
[1]: https://www.outlookindia.com/website/story/kill-bureaucracy-to-keep-the-country-alive/297251
    
[2]: https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/indian-ego-narayana-murthy-right-only-about-particular-kind-indian-48378
    
[3]: https://thewire.in/government/bureaucracy-civil-services-india-ias-officers
    
[4]: https://theprint.in/opinion/experts-are-leading-covid-fight-globally-but-not-in-india-the-bureaucrats-wont-allow-it/430600/
    
[5]: https://www.reddit.com/r/india/comments/69jpql/accountability_this_is_what_is_wrong_with_indian/
    
[6]: https://www.cnbctv18.com/economy/explained-how-egos-and-pdcs-will-work-to-attract-investments-in-india-6069581.htm