Sunday, January 15, 2017

Legacy of Raaj: President Living Like Viceroy, PM like King, IAS like Lords and Sahayaks in Army

In last three days, media is in full swing to create TRP by reporting news in sensational manner over issues like food and Sahayaks in forces, crossing lines in alarming manner and creating dangerous wedge between officers and soldiers. Enemy agents are trying to exploit situation to trigger rebellion in forces. Certain posts of alarming nature are being circulated by certain political groups in Whts App suggesting rebellion. Just for votes and political power certain political groups are singing chorus with enemies. Situation surely is not healthy and causes concerns in minds of patriotic citizens. If govt fails, military is there to hold the country but if military fails even God will not save us. Shamelessly in alarming manner military is being attacked which so far has been a single institution in the country which has withstood test of time.  Worst, while sensationalising issue no media house has pointed out that an army proposal is pending with Govt on Sahayaks for few years. Why is govt sitting over it?

There is no doubt that certain legacy of Raaj are acting as barriers to delivery of good governance and efficient administration. India on the path of growth surely can not sustain it for longer times unless such barriers having roots in British Raaj are removed. Major Barriers are:

1. President lives like a British Viceroy in huge house with thousands in his service moving around in horses buggy where as government staff has no place for offices. Ideally President shall be shifted to a house like Teen Murthy Bhawan and scales of staff and facilities scaled down to level which suits a president of a poor country like India and his present house shall be used to house key offices and host key national events like cabinet oath taking, cabinet meetings ect and visiting international dignitaries

2.  PM and their families are creating new legacies like royals, Even their family members being given life time free govt accommodation, transport and huge security. Every PM on his death needs a memorial on Yamuna Bank and museum in Got accommodation where his kins can stay and have offices. 

3. MPs are not behind and scaling up their perks and benefits day by day. A MP is given a life time pension even if he attends parliament to disrupt it for one hour whereas in army a short service commission officer even after serving ten years including in operations is not given any pension. Politicians are creating new avenues of life time pensions by creating new awards. 

4. Civil administration has four tier British colonial structure which only serves IAS. A Tahseeldar or BDO who is in touch with public may retire as Tahseeldar or BDO with no motivation to work but an IAS must retire as secretory with highest possible salary grade, promotions and highest pension for life. Britsh were still considerate of some services where in they made sure that an ICS officer with minimum 15 years service and experience in district is made collector. Now we have IAS with just 3 years of service with baby experience managing key administrative unit enjoying all perks with a big staff and fleet of cars which adds on to his ego and arrogance rather then grooming him as public servant to serve people. Lack of ground experience and blind wisdom due to ego and arrogance among IAS is the single biggest reason for delay in decision makings and most of govt schemes failing due to bad planning and poor execution. No where in the world Govt administration has four tiers with separate cadre entries. It defies all logic of professionalism as required for delivery of good administration. In time of specialization generalists with no sense history, social sciences and economics are administrative leaders.  

5. India is country where British used military police to control people. Present day police structure is based on military organisation to control people rather than having a community policing model to serve people. It also follows four tier colonial model having four distinct cadres. It just can not deliver community policing and the result is that today almost 99% of the IPC officers have not even investigated and solved more than ten cases. Police leadership like IAS lacks ground experience and they move around like Military Generals scaring people.  

6. Judiciary has totally collapsed. There are huge corruptions in courts. Delivery of justice takes decades. On top of it, Judges are rewarding themselves with servants even after retirements and write Justice as title once retired. Community justice system is missing. Jury system has been destroyed. People are suffering. Good people avoid courts to accept sufferings. 

7. Military is still structured on WW II model which can not meet the requirements of modern hybrid wars. Military still follows the colonial model of having a deep separation between officers and PBORs.   It still maintains distinct JCO cadre who are actually gazetted officers but are paid and treated like non gazetted. Worst it has tried to copy bureaucracy by inflating ranks and promotions. Today Indian army companies are commanded by Lt Cols whereas worldwide   same are commanded by Captains. Army has become top heavy creating more drains on resources. It still maintains sahayak system. Effective higher management of Military is missing. Imbalance in structure is naturally creating frustrations and inefficiencies. 

8. Other govt organisations are not legging behind in this unjust race to grab resources. NFU is one such examples which rewards inefficiency. 

British created a model to control people and not to serve them. India since independence has not reviewed its governance administration structure. Present structure where cadres pay more attention to grab more share in loot, just can not deliver. It is totally unprofessional and needs major structural reforms to overhaul it to make it people focused. Unfortunately that is no where in sight. Lobbies and unions are preventing it to happen. Who so ever is in decision making is looting best. Whoever can lobby best is getting next best loot. Isolated military finds it self totally isolated and marginalized affecting its moral and functioning.  Net result is in addition to inefficiency poor country is almost spending Rs 60000 crores per annum just to feed these loots. 

Unless India overhauls its administration structure the promise of growth and prosperity will always remain a dream. Worst if it is not now and allowed to rot like this, it will turn into a security threat by giving birth to more rural insurgencies and city mafias.  

It is high time Govt forms a committee of independent expert of global standing (keeping IAS and judges away) which shall submit its recommendations to a committee of MPs/ Govt to create an efficient model which can serve the need of efficient delivery of services to people for next 25 years.
The committee of experts shall look into the structure and compensation models comprehensively. Accordingly then a law be  put in place to stop loots by various lobbies and cadres.  

Friday, January 13, 2017

Is It Only Question of Watery Daal and Burnt Roti of BSF or There are Certain Fundamental Issues at Its Core Threating National Security?

Two videos of BSF & CRPF constables complaining about poor food quality, living conditions and salaries have gone viral in social media compelling PMO to ask details of the case. If, it was not the social media making massive number of people reacting, these two acts would have been ignored. If seen in eyes of discipline of forces, both acts violate established rules of forces and need actions against these constables. However the issues raised by them may also not be ignored and is surely a subject of investigations. 

Prompt reaction of PMO and Home Minister without waiting for report and actions of senior officers and also disclosing it to press under pressure from public actually undermines disciplined atmosphere of CAPF and is surely not advisable. It encourages indiscipline and makes jobs of senior officers to control constables more difficult. Political leadership needs to learn art of managing public pressure and not destroy the functioning of CAPF and autonomy of chain of superior officers. 
Nevertheless govt surely needs to investigate certain key issues discreetly without making it an issue of public debate. 

The issue showcases the tip of undercurrent of frustration which prevails among CAPF. An avoidable social media outburst by constables needs a comprehensive looks rather than just taking it as a question of Daal and Roti and discipline in forces? 

1. Are the entitlements adequate to meet the calorie requirements of constables in field conditions?

2. Are the cooking conditions hygienic and method of cooking adequate to make food tasty and palatable?  

3. Are the procurement and supply systems adequate? 

4. Are there sufficient procedure to check the quality and cooking conditions by officers? 

5. Is there corruption and officers are engaged in selling rations as alleged? 

6. Are the living conditions of troops in field areas hygienic and they have adequate and suitably comfortable arrangements for their beds, toilets, bathing and clean drinking water? 

7. Do the posts have adequate man days available to look after their administration as well as carry out required operations effectively?

8. In addition to manning, do the posts have required additional lightening and security support system like electronic surveillance and barbed wired perimeter fencing to make posts effectively secured?  

9. Is the chain of command responsive and have adequate authority and financial empowerment to tackle any problem which may arise in due course of duty?

10. Are the officers adequately engaged with constables? 

11. Most serious of all. Why did in spite of existence for such  long time they fail to manage an effective system?

Certain other stress factors adding into the fuel of frustration which led to above embarrassing outburst surely cannot be ruled out.  
The above outburst has also generated an unpleasant, unjustified and unpalatable debate of parity with army soldiers. It is very unfortunate and alarming that prolonged deployment of army in CI ops which is actually their secondary role to be undertaken only in extreme emergency and for short durations, has degraded status of army to be misperceived as police force. Use of army type uniform by CAPF, which is illegal in eyes of law, has also strengthened above wrong perception.

Primary role of army and terms and conditions of their job profile is totally different than CAPF.  Military is master of national sovereignty under its civilian supreme commander; President and governed by international conventions. It operates in geo-strategic space of foreign lands. Military is an essential enabling tool of national foreign policy and engages itself in military diplomacy and war to impose national will if required. Whereas CAPF operate within national boundaries or under military frontlines in wars under military (In war battle front lines are working boundaries). 

Nevertheless, principles of natural justice demand, that in same working conditions the compensation allowances shall be same but while doing so the principle of average career compensation cannot be ignored. Military is already fighting its case with govt and has been demanding certain principles, formula, benchmarks and standards for govt compensation structure for various services. 

After 1973, when 3rd pay commission changed the well established principles of govt salary structure as decided by first govt under PM Nehru, the problem erupted. Just to reward IAS, subsequent pay commissions have been making the govt pay structures more and more complex. It has resulted into creation of totally unprofessional, unjustified and unbalanced govt administrative cadre and compensation structures creating problems for all. Pay commissions  have only rewarded IAS.

Situation is alarming when it is noted that each arm of govt which is in position of decision making is, rewarding itself without caring about justice. MPs and MLAs have given themselves totally unjustified compensation structures. Politicians even for a single hour in parliament or assembly disrupting proceedings, reward themselves a life time OROP based pension whereas short service commissioned officers in army even after serving nation for 10 years don’t get pension. Politicians are also taking the excuse of security threat to reward them life time govt accommodation, transport and massive security cover at cost of public money. In addition, govts are constituting, various awards and pensions to grant certain additional pensions to politicians and their other key loyalists. 

Judges are not behind. In addition to their fat salaries and pensions for delivering pathetic justice system, they have rewarded themselves servants even after retirements. People wait for justice for decades and face huge corruption in courts but judges must loot govt treasuries. 

Pay commissions have become tools in hands of IAS to reward themselves.  They have ensured that every IAS officer even being most corrupt and inefficient retires from highest grade and pension with OROP. Many unwanted organisations have been created by them to create more perks and benefits. Even after retirement if they face corruption cases, their unions make sure that govt is forced to protect them. Other officers of other govt cadres are not behind IAS. On excuse of parity their unions have ensured grant of NFU to themselves even if they are not promoted. 

In last 70 years govt after govts, have failed to assure minimum wages and social security for masses but shameless and unjustified loot of public money by public servants is continuing.  Today a situation exists where in just to reward politicians, judges and IAS, GOI is spending approximately Rs 60000 crores public money per annum extra on sustaining the govt structure which actually delivers bad governance and inefficient administration. It could be more if a detailed investigation is done.

In eyes of law all these classes are public servants but in line with best HR practices as established and followed worldwide, there exist no principles, formula and justification of cadre and compensation structures for various govt services.  Whosoever is in decision making loots best. Who so ever can lobby best gets next best loot. Disciplined services; like Military, Para Military and CAPF (bulk of them coming from rural areas and middle and lower income groups), are silenced in name of discipline and managing threat to democracy and left with simmering discomfort and anger. On top of that some try to manage this anger cunningly creating divide among them. 

Anarchy exists. No one seems to be in control. But can this anger which has a possibility of exploding be left unattended? If govt or civil administration or CAPF collapse, country can still survive to revive under military but if military structure collapses nation cannot live even for a single day. India lives in the most dangerous and volatile region of the world. 

Considering the alarming situation of shameless loot there is surely a need for expert and honest interventions. There is need for a law to fix basic principles of cadre structure and compensations for various public services. Based on these law then actual salaries, pensions, allowances and perks can be fixed keeping in mind the minimum wages of common civilian worker and provision of social security for masses. Judges and IAS surely lack expertise to recommend such structure and laws and they also have vested interests. There is therefore need for creation of a committee of parliament and committee of independent civilian experts on working our best possible govt administrative organization and compensation structure. The following procedure shall be followed:

1. Committees of independent experts constituted with best in the world shall recommend over all govt administrative structure, various cadre strengths, basic principles of compensations for all public servants including politicians and judges, and formula for calculating minimum wages of civilian worker and social security of masses. Compensation structures of the public servants shall be connected with the minimum wages and social security of masses. 

2. Compensation structure of military, para military and CAPF shall be based on established principles.

3. The concept of average career compensation and average compensation index to draw parity shall be taken as terms of reference.

4. The committee of civilian experts then shall submit its report to Committee of Parliament which shall then take views of military, para military, CAPF, various cadre and trade unions and again refer it back to committee of independent expert for their views. No direct interaction between independent expert committee and various unions shall be allowed. Views of Chief Justice shall also be taken. The committee shall also take public opinion. 

5. Expert Committee of parliament then shall submit the report to Govt which in turn then draft out a law and present it in parliament for debate and passing it as law for consent of president. 

6. Based on this law various pay commissions (one each for politicians, judges, military, CAPF and civil public servants) shall then recommend cadre and salary structures only once. 

7. The laws shall then be reviewed every 25 years. Within these 25 years compensation structures shall automatically adjust based on given principles and formulas. 

Unless the fundamental principles of natural justice and law are followed, such complexities affecting the functioning of govt will continue. When millions sleep in the country hungry without jobs and shelter, bad governance is emerging as security threat to a nation of billion people. Unless the govt machinery has well oiled administration and forces no executive decision can be implemented effectively. Public servants cannot continue rewarding themselves when masses do not have minimum assured wages and social security. 

People make nation. Nation is not for public servants. Public servants must serve people. If they fail and continue looting as it is happening now, then please remember the words of Krishna “ Hey Arjun! Asat ki to satta nahee hai aur sat ka abhave nahee hai” ( injustice has no right over sovereignty of justice and sovereign justice based on truth surely exist. Its matter of time, when revolution by masses, will defeat injustice. Its fundamental principle of concept of Kala (time) which always moves in direction of truth and can be ignored only on peril of the nation. 

Time is friend of none. It is cruel and ruthless and brings destruction if truth doesn’t prevail. India has been formed on principle of Satya Mev Jayatey. Let truth be victorious. Let good sense prevail among those who are looting this country risking her very survival. Before it is too late wake up and act. 

One more point in addition, apparently it seems, as now the govt is in process of deciding allowances, at least the video of CRPF constable looks instigated and motivated and possibility of officers involvement cannot be ruled out. If true, it amounts to serious breach of discipline and govt must take note of it.  

Friday, January 6, 2017

Brief Review of Political Scenario in India By A Military Veteran

National PoliticaScenario

  1. Indian democracy is not a governance by mandate of majority (more than 50%)  but political manipulation by minority voice where a coalition with just over 30% votes can form the govt. 
  2.  Possibility of govt of minority voices opens up space for caste or religion based political maneuvers resulting into promotion of hate and divisions among society causing national security concern.
  3. All major political parties in India are controlled by lobbies or families with no space of internal democracy within. Indian democracy is actually politics by autocracy which counter-minds the spirit of democracy. 
  4. Funding of all major parties are not transparent. Major capitalists fund and support them to bargain policy concessions. It is also a serious security concern as it gives space for foreign powers and agents to own political parties in India. 
  5. Criminalisation of politics is on rise across all parties.
  6. India probably is only country in the democratic world, where civil servants specially so young IAS officers with very less administrative experience and maturity as collectors of district, become returning officers with final say on filing of papers of nomination and announcement of results. It promotes Babu- Politician nexus.
  7. Political regionalism is on rise. Though one hand it is having positive influence in terms of more performance challenges giving rise to growth and more space for regional voice but on other hand it also encourages political desperation permitting certain anti-national activities as being witnessed in WB. 
  8. While allocating tickets to candidates almost all political parties charge money or favour. There are even unconfirmed reports of Rajya Sabha tickets being sold for Rs 250 crores.   It increases influence of money on governance ignoring poor. 
  9. Indian democratic system provides enough space for proxy governance. If a political leader is convicted he appoints his Dalal as CM or PM. Such space counterminds constitution totally. 
  10. Some splinters groups sometimes succeed in rousing public emotions on genuine issues like corruption and crime but such moments peter out over years as either they use such momentum to create their own political identity to grab political power or are bought by existing players.
  11. Political career of most of the political leaders starts with 
    1. They are born in families having political influence or money or 
    2. They fail to secure any job or work and their unemployment pushes them to dalali and chamchagiri of a local political leader for money or small contract works.  Their loyalty is checked on standards of they able to lick spit of leaders. In addition to money, homosexuality and use of sex among political cadres is on rise. Or
    3. Criminal and local goondas making foray in politics. 
  12. Parliament has little say on major issues. MPs coming from countrysides to Delhi prefer disruption in parliament to paid lobbying in ministries for their clients then discuss major issues for public cause. 
  13. Cabinet works as rubber stamp to the decisions of owners of political parties to which they belong. 
  14. Election commission, civil servants and judiciary are showing no signs of any attempt to check the negative trends. 
  15. Media is controlled by rich and they play their tunes. 
  16. Ideologically no party in power shows any difference as governance is managed by civil servants. Politicians get more engaged in administrative decisions for loot and babus take executive decisions which are supposed to be taken by politicians. 
  17. Politicians try to show their performance based on populist programs or schemes then focusing on macro policy issues.  
  18. International pressure for good governance guided by many suggested policy framework work better than any internal policy formulation. Most of good governance policy of Govt of India are driven by International inputs/ pressures. 
  19. Indian Govt lacks capacity of policy formulation in field of macro economics and geo-political space. 
  20. Politicians show no support for effective functioning of judiciary to dispose of criminal cases in short periods and use it as a shield to protect their corrupt deeds. Conviction rates of corrupt politicians and babus specially IAS is one of the lowest in India in world.   


The above scenario and trends are likely to continue as no signs or attempts to reverse above are visible. The coming decade will see heating up of political battles driven by desperation to serve rich and lobbies.  Deepening divide between rich and poor will widen up more. Society will be more fragmented creating space for caste, communal conflicts sometimes may be violent. Caste and religion ridden society is unlikely to organise itself to resist loot at mass scale except few movements. More and more space will be available for foreign powers to intervene and influence events. Rich will continue parking money abroad rather than reinvesting their profits to generate jobs.  Criminalisation of politics may give birth to regional mafias posing open challenge to governments. Masses will be kept devoid of quality education which is seen as a threat by autocratic parties. 

Increasing population of  middle class and urbanization may throw some hope to city based political movements for reforms but unless these movement connect to caste ridden rural India these are likely to be short lived. 

Military will see more marginalization and isolation due to obvious interests of lobbies and families engaged in loot and plunder. 

International pressures will continue shaping Indian macro economic, good governance and geo-political policies. 


Considering above scenarios where is then hope in this hopelessness? 

1. Citizens shall give more importance to quality education, development and growth than caste, religions and lobbies. Bring development in center stage of politics for debate and judging/ rewarding performances than caste and religions. 

2. Isolate and defeat those in elections who speak language of hate and division. 

3. Party in power at Center shall not be given power in major states. Keep political power distributed among various parties to create more uncertainty for them so that performance becomes a major debate. No lobby or family shall be in dominating position to decide Indian destiny.  

4. Dont keep any party in power for more then two terms and keep them out of power for at least two terms. It will balance out their attitude to serve people rather behaving like lords. Show them power of vote. Same applies to political candidates. 

5. Become citizen soldiers and be loyal to India and Indian constitution and give issues based support to any political party. As an Indian there is no need to be loyal to any political party or leader. 

6. Vote in every election. 

7. If no candidate is suitable then vote NOTA. NOTA is powerful tool to convey displeasure and censure. Use it effectively. 

8. Political fitness of any candidate shall be seen in terms of education, qualification, experience, police and IT records and social contribution. 

9. More and more ex servicemen, retired govt and private company employees and honest businessmen shall voice their concern as independent political auditors and opinion makers to educate masses. Yatha Rajah Thatha Praja. Masses do look for such advises from successful people and elders. If one is scared of expressing opinion public-ally then educate those who are in close contact in private.

10. Use social media to express discontentment. Corrupt politicians and babus are very sensitive to such open expressions.