Proceed against corrupt officials unwaveringly

Why is the working and the performance of majority of the State Departments found wanting in exhibiting due efficiency, time bound compliance of guidelines and procedures, transparency and accountability, care for the public grievances, fulfilling of targets and implementation of public welfare and utility schemes, replying to audit and inspection reports, punctuality and attendance and above all and being a grave cause of concern – why should there be instances of indulging in unfair and corrupt means? This scenario cannot be allowed to continue indefinitely and that speaks as to why Governor Satya Pal Malik has very recently directed the Administrative Secretaries to take ‘strict action’ against irregularities and corruption under the control of their departments. He has directed them to proceed against those indulging in such activities and in this process, there should be no dithering or any baulking.
It is not out of context to point out as to why should those state authorities, who are otherwise vested with such powers as to take prompt and immediate action in apparent cases of corruption and irregularities in the departments and offices under their control, adopt a fluctuating and hem and haw approach? Service conduct rules – where corruption, indulging in irregularities, bypassing set procedures and regulations, wilful insubordination, acts of indiscipline, acts of gross misconduct etc are clearly spelt out or lineated and also how to deal with such instances, still unless intervention from the top authority in the Government takes place, no action is taken. Such an approach is deleterious to the norms of management of departments and offices which again should be treated as dereliction of duties. Unless the system is made strong at each layer of management by employing checks and balances procedures, no perceptible change was going to take place. We are afraid, in the instant case too, it might serve purely as symbolic and not actual, literal and tangible.
Cases pending for disposal of grievances at the respective departments and offices are piling up about which Governor’s Grievance Cell at the Governor’s Secretariat too is flooded with intimations and petitions but timely redressing of such complaints are nowhere in the work culture even though Nodal Officers have been identified for the job. Governor taking stock of the situation, had to advise officers to act fast and in the process, proceed against the corrupt officials. Not that provisions and facilities are not provided with intent to benefit the people but the personnel manning such departments must work sincerely, for whole of the day and at the close of the day report to their immediate head, the work in arrears and the reasons of not attending to that work.
The system of regular review and appraisal must be made a part of the statecraft which alone could harbinger smooth working in offices and departments. At each review, assessment and appraisal, a report must be made pin pointing the areas of shortcomings and irregularities and a reply vis-a-vis Action Taken Report must be sought from the concerned department and sent to the higher authorities within a specified timeframe. The aim must be to bring about a whole hearted improvement, efficiency and probity in the state departments and paying salaries must be linked with performance and the work done with efficiency and dedication.