29 Nov 2013

4th Annual Lecture Series on Governance & Public Services

Shri V. Narayanasamy
Following is the text of the Union Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office and Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Shri V. Narayanasamy on the occasion of the 4th Annual Lecture Series of UPSC on “Governance and Public Services” here today: 

“I feel privileged and honoured to extend my warm welcome to Hon’ble President of India to this function. Hon’ble President has unparallel experience and eminence in governance and public service, in his long standing public life spanning several decades. It is, therefore, quite appropriate that Hon’ble President is delivering lecture today. We are all eager to hear the Hon’ble President on the subject of Governance and get enlightened. 

Hon’ble President of India during his visit to Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA), Mussoorie on 18th October, 2013 spoke at length on the need and importance of good governance and public service. I had the opportunity of listening to the passionate speech of Hon’ble President in Mussoorie. Hon’ble President, in his speech stressed on the critical need to observe political neutrality for the government servants and to accord high priority to achieving the government’s objective of inclusiveness which can be accomplished through the determined implementation of the programmes to promote gender equality, education, health, rural development, social welfare, etc. 

Hon’ble President also stated in Mussoorie that the goal of inclusiveness demands the adoption of a grassroot approach and that would enable true involvement of the people in formulating and implementing development plans that will shape their future. Sir, we look forward to your words of wisdom and guidance in public service. 

For any Government, ensuring proper and efficient delivery of public services to the target population is the hallmark of efficiency. And issues of governance play a major role in this efficient delivery. 

This essentially boils down to proper human resource management, namely, recruitment of appropriate personnel in adequate number at appropriate time. Post recruitment training, training during service career and maintaining discipline including recognizing good work is also important. In all these important areas, the contribution of Union Public Service Commission cannot be over emphasized. 

The Recruitment Rules of Group A & B services are framed and finalized in consultation with UPSC. To match with the changing time, the amendment of recruitment rules has also been undertaken in consultation with UPSC efficiently. The UPSC has been mandated for recruitment of Group A officers through competitive exams. I am proud to say that they have been doing a wonderful job in effecting huge recruitment for the Central Government including the premium All India Service. UPSC enjoys great credibility and trust of the masses and is recognised for its fair, just and impartial selection process. 

Another important contribution of UPSC has been in undertaking selection by promotion. By introducing various innovative measures like the single window mechanism the time taken for processing of promotion cases has reduced considerably. This single window system has also reduced the average time taken for giving advice in many disciplinary cases. 

UPSC’s contribution in bringing about reforms in Civil Services Examination is also noteworthy. The Government after considering the recommendations of the UPSC has accepted many important recommendations which have also been notified and applied to Civil Service Examinations in recent years. I would like to emphasise here that in terms of course contents, a full paper on ethics and integrity has been included in the Civil Service (Main) Examination. 

We are witnessing a lot of activity in our governance system today for tackling corruption. I am sure introducing this subject at the time of recruitment through competitive examination would sensitize the new recruits and thereby the entire Government in mitigating this problem. We have also introduced capsules on anti-corruption measures in the training for Civil Service officers. We have also requested the State Governments to include course on anti-corruption during the training of Government officers. We have initiated action to strengthen our anti-corruption laws and taken several administrative measures to tackle corruption. 

When it comes to public service delivery, another important area is in making the whole process as transparent as possible along with accountability. We have introduced ‘Right of Citizens for time-bound delivery of Goods and Services and Redressal of their Grievances Bill’, 2011’ in the Lok Sabha and the Standing Committee has given its recommendation. We expect that the Bill will be passed in the Parliament soon. In today’s world, the citizens of our country are very much knowledgeable and aware of the functioning of the Government, thanks to the RTI – and also the age of internet. A slightest glitch somewhere or the smallest mistake in the process of service delivery is going to be noticed and voiced very strongly. 

Hence, the Central Government is promoting higher and higher use of technology in the routine functioning of the Government. E-governance is one of our priority and we have started ‘e-office’ in the Department of Personnel & Training. I am happy to bring to the attention of Hon’ble President that DOPT had a retreat recently where senior officers of the Department spent some quality time in brainstorming. This has thrown up many new ideas for improving the role and functioning of the Department for increasing the satisfaction of all its stakeholders. 

I am sure thoughts and ideas expressed by the learned dignitaries in the lecture series on ‘Governance and Public Service’ would provide opportunity to assimilate these new ideals to prepare a road map and create a vision for bringing about contemporary reforms in various methodologies in bringing Good Governance and Public Service delivery. 

Today, we are honoured that the President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee is gracing this occasion and has spared time from his ever-busy schedule to deliver a lecture on this subject which is very close to his heart. I am sure that all of us will be extremely benefitted by the invaluable new ideas, thoughts to be expressed by a Statesman and multi-faceted personality of his stature having a vast and varied experience as an able Administrator, Diplomat and Finance wizard. 

I wish this event a grand success. I also wish the Chairman and Members of UPSC, other officers and staff every success in their endeavours.” 

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