Logging in will submit your comments on articles instantly without administrator moderation.
* indicates mandatory.
Keep me logged in
4 of family die after shop catches fire in Dilshad Garden
Four members of a family were charred to death at their residence in M Block area of North-east Delhi’s Dilshad Garden in the early hours of Tuesday. Two other members somehow managed to escape and survived.
Dhyan Chand Stadium decks up for unique cultural festival
Cops tailed Gadoli lover to reach his Mumbai hideout
Why need ban when documentary on Dec 16 gang-rape available on internet, asks HC
Yamuna: NGT raps DJB for spending money without its permission
25-yr-old held in card cloning racket
Kin of road accident victim get Rs 73.11 lakh compensation
22-year-old nurse gang-raped in Gurgaon, two arrested
My flesh crawls, says woman who accused Pachauri of harassment
Ryan case: DCPCR seeks report from Delhi Police
Govt in no rush to ratify Prez rule in Arunachal
Unlike other Presidential proclamations, the Centre will not rush to ratify President's Rule in Arunachal Pradesh in the Budget session of Parliament, with the matter pending before the Supreme Court.
Govt accepts UGC proposal allowing pvt deemed varsities 6 campuses
LeT planned to attack defence scientists at Taj: Headley
Maha favours women’s entry to Haji Ali Dargah
SC rejects plea of 2 rebel Arunachal Congress MLAs
After Maggi, UP regulator finds more noodle brands sub-standard
Siachen rescue: Over 150 soldiers, 2 dogs battle extreme weather
Siachen: Jaya announces Rs 10L each to kin of four Tamil Nadu jawans
NIA seeks social media giants’ help to identify IS activities
Bukhari urges PM to ensure transparency in anti-terror arrests
Uttar Pradesh: Poll time, party time
A Bihar-type non-BJP alliance for U.P Assembly polls looks unlikely.
Prasanto K Roy
Work just begins for Net Neutralists
Adverse drug reactions and data
Doubling farmers income by 2020
The common virus - flavivirus
Unbuttoning the gender straitjacket
High-tech weapons made in India
Why India has maximum stillbirths
Why the drop in global oil prices is not for you
Did 2015 make us more climate wise?
Police, protesters clash in Hong Kong injures 100
Baton-wielding policemen fired warning shots and pepper spray after the clash started early on Tuesday.
US to help India bring 26/11 criminals to justice
German train crash kills at least nine, injures 100
Cameron’s mother signs petition against his policy
IS deployed 60 jihadists in Europe to attack 5 cities
Swedish prosecutor says still aims to question Assange
UN urges Turkey to open border, warns Aleppo could lack aid
Man immolates self outside Kensington Palace
‘Dead’ Chinese baby awakes just before cremation
Sikh actor barred from boarding plane in Mexico
India to spend $1 trillion on power infra by 2030: Minister Piyush Goyal
One of the world’s largest energy consumers aims to provide 24X7 electricity to citizens.
NE oil & gas output to double; refining to get Rs 1.3 tn investment
SAIL shows steely resolve amid global price fall, shines in Q3
Bandhan Bank offers VISA int’l debit cards, invites NRIs to open accounts
Allahabad Bank beats all odds, does superbly
Public sector PNB posts Q3 business growth of 11.2%
India to ratify WTO trade facilitation pact: Teaotia
NBCC bags Rs 2,526 crore work order in January
GAIL profit floats 10% to Rs 664 crore in third quarter
PFC quarterly net profit rises 2.6% to Rs 1,582 crore
Beauty of theatre
As a part of the ongoing 18th Bharat Rang Mahotsav, three plays, one in Hindi and two in Bengali, were staged in the national Capital.
Why some people don’t choose equally good looking mates?
Air pollution increases asthma risk in babies
Stay positive to beat cancer
Overly critical parents lead to persistence of ADHD in kids
India’s cultural influences reflect in its cuisine: Rocco
Honey can destroy harmful fungus, save lives: Study
An arty affair
All for love!
Complacent india fall prey to lankan tigers
India’s winning sequence in T20 internationals came to an embarrassing end on Tuesday night.
Steve the most selfish cricketer: Warne
Indian dominance continues with another golden day
Mumbai beat Delhi 8-3 to keep semis hopes alive
‘India need that one big player in football’
Guardiola can tempt me to leave Barca: Busquets
Louis Van Gaal accuses media for inventing Mourinho-Man U link-up
No bitterness for Terry: Savage
Pro Kabaddi: Pirates defeat Warriors 36-31
Indian eves beat Lanka 5-0 in football event
I don’t work for awards: Sonam Kapoor
The Prem Ratan Dhan Payo actor says that she works very hard to get better in her art and for her the love of audience is more important than awards.
Nothing wrong with Rishi’s temperamental nature: Divya
Salman goes clean-shaven for Sultan
Lupita Nyong’o in talks to star in sci-fi thriller
Taylor Swift to perform at the Grammy Awards
Beyonce to go on world tour from April 27
Khloe, James Harden call it quits
Nawazuddin to star in Sohail’s next
Varun to play ‘fun loving character’ in Raabta
Nervous to share screen space with Hrithik: Yami
Draped in colours
Behind the glitz and glamour of the recently held third India Africa forum summit lies a simple fact that India is still as clueless about its intentions and policy towards Africa as it has always been, reports Kriti Upadhyaya.
African voices in India
Inspiring Kenyan warriors to save lions
Queen of the wild nurtures Indian wilderness
Africa talks to Africa Rising - Unprecedented and historic
Africa talks to Africa Rising - Of trade and technology
Africa talks to Africa Rising - Of India
Zambia @51 Message from Acting High Commissioner Sikapale Henry Chinzewe
Uniting india and africa with music
The Dosa I had always imagined
Prenup: Agreeing to disagree
With the government contemplating to bring in a ‘model’ prenuptial agreement, Tania Ameer analyses the societal, psychological and legal impact the move would amass.
Return of drug
Saving Our Wallflowers
Seeking lost glory
Awake to the sleeping foe?
Fobbing on FOBs
Past glorious, present tense
Perils of decision-making
16 August 2013, New Delhi, Mukesh Kacker
MAILING THE ARTICLE
You have decided to email the following article:
Perils of decision-making
16 August 2013, New Delhi, Mukesh Kacker
* indicates mandatory.
For a bureaucrat, taking a quick decision in good faith is fraught with risks.
The Durga Nagpal controversy has brought to the surface the issue of political interference impeding bureaucratic work. A few months ago, presumably in response to the mounting criticism from prominent Indian industrialists and businessmen about the total lack of decision-making in government, the prime minister exhorted the senior bureaucracy to take decisions fearlessly and expeditiously.
Case in point
X, a brilliant and extremely well-educated senior IAS officer, was posted as the managing director of the state industrial development corporation of a state. He had recently returned to India after acquiring a degree in management from a premier institution overseas as part of mid-career training and was bursting with energy and fresh ideas. The state industrial development corporation was responsible for a wide variety of activities, including development of enabling infrastructure for industries, tying up joint ventures with profitable ventures and giving financial support to industries. In addition, it also acted as the procurer of certain specified industrial products for use by the entire government.
X was delighted with his job because it challenged both his energy and education in management and finance. The chief minister, a wise and forward-looking politician, had hand-picked X for this job and they shared an excellent working relationship. X was also on good terms with most senior bureaucrats, barring the principal secretary (finance), a thoroughly incompetent and malicious officer who owed his position to flattery and licking the boots of the state finance minister, a heavyweight politician with direct links with the high-command of the ruling party at the Centre. The chief secretary, though a decent man otherwise, was a nondescript mediocre who had risen in service primarily because he had been non-controversial. X was not overtly concerned about sharing negative vibes with the principal secretary (finance) as he had limited direct dealings with him. In short, X had as good an environment to operate as can be possible in a real-life situation. The state was experiencing high industrial growth and X, as the central figure, had his hands full. There were bids to be finalised for specific industrial activities and for industrial infrastructure creation.
There were also joint ventures and financing proposals that consumed a lot of his energy and time.
Against this backdrop of intense activities came a subject matter which appeared not just routine but also mundane. As a one-stop procurer of water filters for a large number of government departments and programmes, the corporation had finalised a large tender for water filters just before X had joined. In fact X’s predecessor had approved the supply order in favour of a company that was based in the state just a week before X took over as managing director. At the time of the tender there was some controversy over the state government’s decision to restrict the selection only to those firms that had their manufacturing plants within the state and a few national-level companies had protested and even complained against this decision. The state government, however, had issued a direction to the corporation to select eligible bidders only from companies/firms domiciled in the state. However, all this had taken place before X had joined and he had no role in the entire tender process. X became aware of this case only when the first tranche of supply was ready for dispatch and had to be inspected by the engineers of the corporation at factory site.
The site inspection report brought out a deficiency in the body of the product and X immediately ordered a complete halt to the supply. A notice was also issued to the party, asking them to ‘show cause’ why their order should not be cancelled forthwith. At this point, the corporation received two letters. One was a detailed explanation from the party explaining the cause of the deficiency and promising to remove it and supply the first tranche of the improved product within a month. The second was a representation from the party which was L2 in the tender, asking for cancelling the order given to L1 and awarding it to them (L2) at the tender price. After examining these counter-claims, X found that the defect was a minor one and could be removed within a month as promised. He, therefore, decided that there was no plausible reason for cancelling the supply order and awarding it to L2.
Accordingly, a month’s extension was given to the party to supply the improved product, subject, of course, to another at-site product inspection. After one month, engineers of the corporation inspected the improved product at the site and found it to be compliant with all quality parameters. The supply was resumed and completed, albeit with a month’s delay. During all this, X was completely unaware of the quiet rumblings that would spell trouble for him.
The adverse turn
A national-level manufacturer who was also antagonistic to the state-level party, the supplier in the present case, sent a complaint to the chief minister protesting the decision to restrict eligible bidders to state-level parties and alleging favouritism in awarding the tender to the present supplier. The chief minister, who receives many such complaints every day, marked it to the principal secretary (finance). It was here that an otherwise innocuous piece of paper assumed capabilities of dangerous proportions.
The principal secretary (finance), a malicious and conspiring individual, realised the potential for serious harm to X that this paper held. Within the government, there was nothing to be inquired into, as the government itself had issued an order to the corporation for selecting eligible bidders from state-level parties. But sending it to an independent agency like the lokayukta, which functions independently of the government, could perhaps create trouble for X. So, the PS (finance) quietly forwarded the complaint to the state lokayukta. The case spun out of control from there, as the lokayukta marked the complaint to his police wing which received it with alacrity, always eager to make high-profile bureaucrats bite dust. Could there be anything more ridiculous than section 13(1)(d)(iii)? Can there be any contract where the party winning the bid does not obtain pecuniary gain? And which party’s interpretation of the term ‘public interest’ will be relevant?
On arrangement with Governance Now
For an India of many states
Young and free! Really?
This article has
to post your comment.
POST YOUR COMMENT
You may post as guest, or by
. If logged in, your comment will be posted instantly without moderation by administrator.
* indicates mandatory.
(will not be posted online)
Has the son of India’s richest man killed two persons?
As AICTE loses its case in SC, IIPM crosses 2 million fans on FB
How Ambani’s Reliance corrupted the system
British intelligence alert exposed former CBI chief’s dirty link with meat seller
IAF planning to induct women in fighter aircraft stream: Air Force chief
© Millennium Post. All Rights Reserved.