Jharkhand has taken the lead in implementing Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of roping in private expertise in key government positions.
The Raghubar Das-led government is planning to recruit experts from outside for the post of Special Secretaries — equivalent to Deputy Development Commissioners (DDCs) — who are responsible for monitoring development works at the district level. They will be like full-fledged government servants.
According to a highly-placed source in the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) in Ranchi, apart from Special Secretaries in districts, the government also plans to recruit professional experts in the same rank in departments in the state Secretariat. However, these officers will be hired on contract basis and could be retired people too.
“There is a dearth of officers in the state. In 2016, as many as 23 Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and India Forest Service (IFS) officers are going to retire. We want to ensure that development work is not affected due to shortage of officers. Lateral entry of private individuals will not only ensure smooth functioning of the government, but also bring in talented people in the administration,” said the source.
He said that most of the development works are monitored by the DDCs in districts.
“The Deputy Commissioner hardly has time to look after development works minutely. It is the DDC who coordinates development works of all departments in the district. As of now, officers recruited only through state Public Service Commission (PSC) or Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) are eligible for becoming DDC. By ‘opening’ this post for outside experts, we want to improve administration so that the fruits of development reach the last man in society,” the source added.
The Centre has been trying to rope in private expertise from industry and academia to compete for senior administrative post.
The Department of Personnel & Training, which comes under the direct charge of the Prime Minister, is in the process of drawing up a framework on a process for the same.
The Department has come out with a Results Framework Document (RFD) in this regard. If implemented, corporate executives, leading economists and academics can also join the government, which is expected to improve governance.