Close on the heels of the Prime Minister reiterating his Government’s goal to ensure good governance, development, responsibility and accountability in Jammu and Kashmir, State Administrative Council has intensified its efforts to give a practical shape to development and good governance in the State. It has initiated many palpable measures to give an undaunted push to developmental efforts and improve upon governance in the State. Good and quintessential Government in this State, to be precise, has been a long cherished dream of the people. Accountability and responsibility both too, though central to any form of Government, have been found much in wanting.
Governor N. N. Vohra while chairing second meeting of the State Administrative Council (SAC) a few days back in which his Advisors and the Chief Secretary too participated, took stock of various proposals submitted by Administrative Departments which were deliberated upon with intent to have them approved . Various measures proposed to be taken in a “Mission Mode” were decided to be taken so that delivery of development was both fast and looked like one .
In environ of aspiring for progress and development, what was required most was how best and how quickly the same were delivered on the ground. Delays, deferments, pigeonholing and postponing were antidotes and antagonistic to the idea of fast development, fast delivery and meeting set targets. The meeting under reference and many of such in the near future, must strive for a shift, refashioning and revamping in contrast to the obsolete conventional ways with a snail’s pace. It is, therefore, in the fitness of things that a visible shift from outlays to outcomes, as proposed, must prove as the dipstick of a feeling of a change by the public.
The main endeavour to bind the administrative structure to show results is to evolve, fix and assign periodic targets, of course with deliberations, reviews and adjustments, monitor them either through a specially constituted monitoring cell or by means of some other administrative ways and motivate performing endowments not only to achieve targets but surpass them. If this approach and attitude would have been the guiding principles of State governance and administrative machinery, this State would have achieved much more than what is with us presently. It is heartening that the same lines of approach more or less, are sought to be adopted as the SAC has decided to set up a dedicated cell for regular monitoring of the progress of identified mega projects.
What has usually been experienced is that the flagship schemes and other Centrally sponsored schemes, otherwise aiming at reaching the fixed targets of the population in a substantial way are taken just lightly by State Governments as their impact is sought to be felt at national level though development takes places with an even spread across the country. That mindset is needed to be changed. Likewise, schemes under Prime Minister’s Development Package specially tailored for Jammu and Kashmir need to be given a push in respect of speed and quality of work, besides ensuring proper expenditure management.
Another most important aspect of ensuring fast and quality governance is what amount of response was there to public grievances, complaints, feedback including allegations of mismanagement of public funds and other problems. The redressal mechanism must be foolproof and result oriented. SAC will hopefully look into the entire gamut of the governance, reasonably good governance and have very little tolerance for “loose shunting”.