- By allowing lateral entry into top, decision-making levels of the bureaucracy, the Centre has taken a bold first step towards reforming India’s Byzantine administrative set-up. The idea behind throwing open about 10 posts of Joint Secretary level across ministries and departments is to invite expertise and specialisation.
- The Centre must ensure that its selection process is above board. Individuals picked must be of unquestionable integrity and credentials.
- There should be no suggestion of conflict of interest, an issue that cropped up in the UK some years ago with respect to corporate executives on deputation to the energy ministry.
- For such reforms to acquire credibility, they must be accompanied by steps to uphold institutions, such as the Central Information Commission.
- The Centre needs to alter perceptions here; else, its efforts may go down as a throwback to Indira Gandhi’s ‘committed bureaucracy’, accountable to none and running roughshod over institutions.
Source: Hindu Businessline