NEW DELHI, 29th July: While addressing the new 2020 Batch IAS Officers on their 3 month stay as Assistant Secretaries in Government of India, the Union Minister of State (Charge independent) Science and technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh today redefined his role for 2047.
Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s invocation of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, Dr Jitendra Singh said the next 25 years are crucial for India as these will be the ascension years of the ascent of India on the world stage. Therefore, the current batch of IAS officers are privileged as they have time on their side and also the opportunity to dedicate the next 25 years of active duty to achieve the dream of Century India.
Reiterating that every training module for the current batch of civil servants must be designed with the vision of 2047 in mind, the Minister said that it is difficult to view 2047 through the prism of 2022 and therefore clues exclusive relating to 2047 India is to be determined. What will be the role of the civil servant, what will be the role of the civil servant and whether there will be a role of the civil servant in 2047, that is the question, he said.
Dr. Jitendra Singh recalled that this assistant secretary training program was launched in 2015 in line with the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, when the 2013 lot officers were first assigned as assistant secretaries in the Indian government ministries/departments. The objective of this program is to provide junior IAS officers with exposure to the workings of Indian government at an early stage in their career upon completion of their Phase II training at LBSNAA, Mussoorie. These assistant secretaries are assigned for a total duration of 13 weeks.
The Minister informed that since 2015, the program has been successfully implemented by the DoPT and added that this type of exposure helps them gain a national perspective and an appreciation of the diversities in national policies. It also sensitizes them to the broader perspective of Indian government policies and programs and the officers are likely to be inspired agents of change when they return to their framework states. Special themes were also included from 2019 and in that year water conservation which was one of the priority areas of the Indian government was added.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, “Technology and innovation are the key to bridging the gaps in delivery and implementation, but the basic prerequisites are the dedication and commitment of public servants with a pro- people, which means being proactive and responsive to citizens. ‘ needs and aspirations while keeping concerns in mind. He added that we also need to build trust between government and citizens because no society can peacefully prosper and reach its potential with an existing trust deficit between government and citizens.
Dr Jitendra Singh said he was informed that this group of 175 officers had 108 officers with backgrounds in engineering and many officers with backgrounds in medicine, management, law and arts also joined. He pointed out that it would be very admirable if they used their training to show how ministries/departments can innovate, use new ideas and deliver high quality results directly to citizens with complete elimination of middlemen and leakages. The Minister also hoped that the technocrats can do justice to the government’s flagship programs in sectors like health, agriculture, sanitation, education, skills and mobility to name a few, that are technology-based and technology-driven.
Commending the role of the Indian Institute of Public Administration, Dr. Jitendra Singh highlighted that IIPA works as a knowledge partner with different ministries and incorporates in their training and research activities the latest trends and advances in governance and public administration. This includes a) [email protected], a visionary blueprint for a “future-ready India” befitting the 100th anniversary of India’s independence; competency framework for public service under Mission Karmayogi which envisions preparing public servants for the future by making them more constructive, empowering, energetic, innovative, proactive, professional, progressive, transparent and technologically-enabled; Indian thoughts on good governance and new methods of governance like Prime Minister Gati Shakti who aims for the coordinated planning and execution of infrastructure projects in India to improve efficiency and reduce logistics costs.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, “The Prime Minister has emphasized popular participation as the essence of good governance through Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Viswas aur Sabka Prayas. Trust is therefore at the heart of governance. He said that while one of the keys to good governance is technology, the other is essentially the moral standard. Technology promotes transparency and therefore accountability, which is the fundamental characteristic of good governance, while moral standards confer legitimacy. These two together will usher in a new political culture that sets the stage for introducing transformational and innovative reforms. The minister said that the days when we could afford to work in silos that held us back for a long time are over. Today, it is an all-encompassing, enveloping, inclusive and participatory march towards development.
In his closing remarks, Dr. Jitendra Singh told the young civil servants that gaining knowledge from institutions like the IIPA will help them tackle the various decision-making challenges they will face in states and districts. and conveyed his best wishes to the agents in all their future endeavours.