DailyPost 1835

There is a human imperative to governance and that is as complicated as the governance itself. It has long been said that if you can manage your human resources well, rest everything can be managed. There are lots of issues which make a world class governance happen, suffice to say we should sort out the first step diligently, to move further. Otherwise, we all know what problems congenital issues can generate? It might be better than not having the solution at all. Whatever might be the government, filling up vacancies, what we call as appointments, has been plaguing the Indian nation for quite some time.* At no time have we reached anywhere close to a solution. Nobody seems to be in hurry to remedy one big sore point going into creating the helpless situation we are in.

When posts are created, each of those are accounted for from every angle and are approved only when all the criteria are met. The appointments are to be made as per the requirements, failing which it adds to the workload of the existing workforce, bringing down their performance as well. The strength of the mechanism to recruit seamlessly at all levels, with periodicity maintained so as to serve the system in an optimal manner, over decades is the challenge. Unfortunately, it has afflicted judicial appointments too. It becomes more complex when it becomes multiagency, with no timelines. Checks and balances, without the final time deadline, have thrown the whole system in a quandary.

While the Indian Civil Services exam has maintained its consistent recruitment, there are a large number of State Public Service Commissions which have failed on the consistency part, leading to backlogs, court cases et al. The inefficiencies at this stage afflicts the services in variety of wrangling all throughout their service life. On the one hand, police public ratio is skewed and added to that we find  20-25% vacancies at most  places most of the time. How it impacts the functioning is left to anybody’s imagination. The inhuman work hours and having to do a variety of jobs, leading to non-specialization are all its fallouts. Some critical vacancy streams are not created, so the issue of filling up does not arise. Staffing is a specialized function of organizations and overall of the government to maintain the staff / operations integration.

Judicial backlogs keep coming back in the news and rightly so. ”Over 40%  vacancies in judges’ posts in 11 HC, Patna tops list,” has been a June headline. This is just an indication of how it impacts the higher judiciary, without getting into the nitty gritty into the overall vacancies situation. So many times we find that same judge handling so many special courts. Tribunals are created to dispense justice in a variety of specialized areas. It is extremely important in various sectors and more so in economic matters needing immediate resolution. The Supreme Court in exasperation commented, “ Fill vacancies or shut them.” There are vacancies of 20 presiding officers, 110 judicial members and 111 technical members in various tribunals across the country. We have become an Appointment Less State. 


Sanjay Sahay

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