Thursday, September 27, 2012

Significant issues in Indian Administration: Values in public service; Regulatory Commissions; National Human Rights Commission; Problems of administration in coalition regimes; Citizen-administration interface; Corruption and administration; Disaster management.

To all the enquiries from readers regarding the continuity and future course of action of this blog, the good news is that this blog will now move on to covering higher,wider and deeper aspects of public administration as a discipline and practice that will broaden the learning horizon majorly. So, remain tuned in as this blog will be updated continuously.


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Today we will be discussing the Significant Issues in Administration.


Values flow from the individual's inner self of knowing what is right and wrong and doing that with integrity. Whereas ethics is about imposing from outside by an organisation as to what is right to do and wrong on its employees conduct.

Therefore in the recent times, one has seen an erosion of values and ethics in public service personnel due to a number of reasons like corruption, nepotism, bureaucratization,non transparency,etc.

Ethics can be handled by the organisations, however, unless it is backed by values in an individual, it will be incomplete in its totality. That is why values are extremely important. For details on the same there are extremely good and informative links regarding the above, posted below.

Do refer to this draft public service bill of the GOI,which is yet to be passed -


As part of the process of de-bureaucratization and de-concentration
of authority, the process of entrusting decision making responsibility of
Government to Regulatory Commissions is in evidence.
It is quite likely that such Commissions shall be set up in many more areas of governance.
For the recruitment of civil servants we already have the Public Service
Commissions. In addition, we now have the Insurance Regulatory
Authority, the Telecom Regulatory Authority and the Power Regulatory
Authorities at the Centre and in the States. It is quite likely that by 2020
the process of decision making and enforcement of such decisions in many
more sectors will be in the hands of Regulatory Commissions over which
the government will have little control. Whether this would be for the
better or it will have adverse implications for governance will depend on
how these Commissions function and are allowed to behave.

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) is an autonomous statutory body established in 1993 according to the provisions of the Protection of Human Rights Act. The Commission is composed of a chairperson and six members. The chairperson has to have been a chief justice of the Supreme Court.

The purpose of the NHRC is, suo moto or through the petition of a person, to investigate the violation of human rights or the failures of the state or other to prevent a human rights violation. The Commission can visit state institutions where people are detained such as jails to examine the conditions of the institutions and make sure they are in compliance with human rights provisions. They can also examine any law or constitutional provisions to ensure that the safeguards of the law protect human rights. They are to advise the state on measures to prevent terrorism and related violations as well as on how to effectively implement provisions of human rights treaties. The commissions may also take on research about human rights, create awareness campaigns through various mediums, and encourage the work of NGOs.

Petitions can be made directly to the commission in the case of any human rights violation. However in 2002 there was a great deal of controversy surrounding the commission's rejection of the petition made by R. K. Sharma's family in the Shivani Batnagar Murder case. R.K. Sharma was the main person accused in the case and had absconded. The Commission denied the plea on the basis that the family petition also included the protection of the accused. The criticism is that the commission granting of protection would have been only to promote the human rights of the family and accused which are the same an every human being, not to protect him against the law or prosecution. It is also to be noted that Commission often takes years to respond to a single case by which time the case is irrelevant or has been dropped and often poor people who petition the commission have to spend large amounts on lawyers to get they case heard.

Visit its official website -
Wikipedia -
 NHRC recently in the news -

A coalition government is a cabinet of a parliamentary government in which several parties cooper­ate. The usual reason given for this arrangement is that no party on its own can achieve a majority in the parliament. The UPA 2 party in the Parliament of India which is in power is a coalition government and consists of a number of parties working together to maintain majority in the parliament.

Do go through these detailed research articles on problems of administration in coalition regimes - AND

A case study on Ireland's Politico - Administrative Relations Under Coalition Government -

Citizen - administration interface are all those points where the public and administration connect or meet. It can be citizens charters, surveys conducted by the administration, petitions to the public organisations,connecting online with administration,voting,etc.

The main idea is to provide best experience of citizen administration interfaces which unfortunately at the present moment lack transparency, however, they are on the road to reform.

Refer to these informative articles for the same :



Corruption has always been a menace in administration and there have been many factors to blame for it like non-transparency,political interference,erosion of values and ethics in public services,etc.
One must be quite aware that political and administrative corruption has gone to an all time high right now with a number of humongous scams coming up recurrently. corruption erodes the institutional capacity of government as procedures are disregarded, resources are siphoned off, and public offices are bought and sold. At the same time, corruption undermines the legitimacy of government and such democratic values as trust and tolerance. Corruption cuts at the very root of socio-economic and political progress of a country and democratic ideals. Therefore, this needs to be curbed immediately with stringent action.

Refer -


Disaster management can be defined as the organization and management of resources and responsibilities for dealing with all humanitarian aspects of emergencies, in particular preparedness, response and recovery in order to lessen the impact of disasters.

Disasters can be Natural,Man made,breakdown of law and order,spread of epidemics,etc.

Every country should be prepared for a disaster. These disaster preparedness activities are designed to minimise loss of life and damage – for example by removing people and property from a threatened location and by facilitating timely and effective rescue, relief and rehabilitation. Preparedness is the main way of reducing the impact of disasters. Community-based preparedness and management should be a high priority in physical therapy practice management.

Disaster  relief - This is a coordinated multi-agency response to reduce the impact of a disaster and its long-term results. Relief activities include rescue, relocation, providing food and water, preventing disease and disability, repairing vital services such as telecommunications and transport, providing temporary shelter and emergency health care.

Once emergency needs have been met and the initial crisis is over, the people affected and the communities that support them are still vulnerable. Recovery activities include rebuilding infrastructure, health care and rehabilitation. These should blend with development activities, such as building human resources for health and developing policies and practices to avoid similar situations in future.
Disaster management is linked with sustainable development, particularly in relation to vulnerable people such as those with disabilities, elderly people, children and other marginalised groups.
Myths and Realities of Disaster Assistance summarises some of the common misunderstandings about disaster management.

Voluntary agencies and associations, NGOs and Non Profit Organisations play a huge role in Disaster Mangement.

National Disaster Management Authority Of India -  It is the Apex Body for Disaster Management in India. The setting up of the NDMA and the creation of an enabling environment for institutional mechanisms at the State and District levels is mandated by the Disaster Management Act, 2005. Website

Disaster Management In India -

National Institute of Disaster Management - The National Institute of Disaster Management constituted under the Disaster Management Act 2005 has been entrusted with the nodal national responsibility for human resource development, capacity building, training, research, documentation and policy advocacy in the field of disaster management. Upgraded from the National Centre for Disaster Management of the Indian Institute of Public Administration on 16th October, 2003, NIDM is steadily marching forward to fulfill its mission to make a disaster resilient India by developing and promoting a culture of prevention and preparedness at all levels.

Disaster Management in the news recently -


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Do share your UPSC as well as all/any other examinations' experience in context of this blog and its contribution towards the same. Also, the role this blog has played in making its reader get a better/good grasp of the subject as a whole. It will only work to better this blog and continue it. Send your testimonials via the comments option and it will be conveyed.

 As mentioned within its very first post, this blog was created with sincere efforts to generate a vivid conceptual & theoretical hold of the discipline of Public Administration in the minds of genuinely interested readers.
It is relevant to note that this blog was initiated to elucidate various aspects of Public Administration in order to allow any person belonging to any walk of life to reap benefits from the thorough base research of the blog.

Sincere efforts have been put into this blog to create a clear conceptual & theoretical hold over the subject of Public Administration in the reader's mind along with certain practical examples.

Therefore, UPSC aspirants should take note,that together with conceptual & theoretical knowledge, it is their responsibility & extremely imperative on their part to work on the practical aspects through proper General studies preparation, keeping abreast with current statistics of the topics in the public administration syllabus, up to date with current events and issues through newspaper and relevant magazines/journal reading, watching news and debates,using the internet effectively,etc. and then regularly applying their analytical skills to arrive at just and practicable solutions for the issues on the lines of Public Administration concepts/theories. It is relevant to note that conceptual & theoretical knowledge coupled with the candidates's hard work, proper strategy of keeping abreast with current affairs and analysing those events, time management and most important a presence of mind to interlink and connect the theoretical and conceptual knowledge with the practical facts at the opportune time in order to arrive at a holistic answer for the questions posed in the upsc mains exams are the recipe to success.

In furtherance of research from different sources viz. Public Administration Mains UPSC answer writing skills, the following points have been reproduced below which would be helpful:

Both the papers are interlinked and should not be thought of as separate. Paper 1 is all about Public Administration theories and concepts, and paper 2 is about the practical aspects of administration specific to India,that is Indian Administration and how the theories of Public Administration can be applied practically in today's times in India. Paper 2 questions are often related to General studies questions and covers Public Administration in the contemporary times and would require you to be analytical in your approach. The theoretical knowledge of paper 1 syllabus combined with a well rounded  general studies preparation and paper 2 syllabus preparation will help the candidate in analysing the practical questions asked in paper 2, on the lines of Public Administration theories/concepts, and make connections among the various topics of the syllabus. This would represent the candidate's all round knowledge about the subject in depth and not just mugging up.

The presentation of answers can be as per the comfort of the candidate, however, what matters is the true content which obviously can never vary in its versions , and it should be strictly within the boundary of what is asked in the question and well within the word limit.

Develop a general interest & aptitude for the subject,as only that will lead you through.

There should always be a short introduction to your answer that would give a background of the topic and then continue it into the body of the answer that can be in any form ( bullet points,paragraph,etc). The answer body along with theoretical and conceptual points should contain suitable examples - current/historical(or both) regarding the topic in question and then the conclusion should be remedial, forward looking in approach and optimistic. Be very careful regarding the conclusion because it will give a face to your analytical skills.
Always remember, the main idea of writing an answer or an essay is always the same, to give a true picture of the topic along with the solutions you put forward which should be based on sound principles of Public Administration and practicality.

Do go through previous years question papers ( last 4-5 years) religiously, answer them and evaluate your knowledge,grasp and understanding of the subject yourself or by referring to persons experienced in the art of UPSC answer writing.

At the end, it is your decision. Soliciting advice is a good practice,but the decision should be yours taking into account what is feasible to you.

It has been this blog's honest effort to try and cover all possible areas in its knowledge related to its posts,however, it is entirely the candidate's discretion to prepare and execute his/her UPSC Mains exam preparation strategy.

Also,do go through these links to find out what the toppers of civil services have to say regarding answer writing for Pub admin mains questions along with their answers. It would be of immense help. Refer -

Best wishes to all those appearing for the UPSC Mains Exam 2012.


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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Law and Order Administration: British legacy; National Police Commission; Investigative agencies; Role of central and state agencies including paramilitary forces in maintenance of law and order and countering insurgency and terrorism; Criminalisation of politics and administration; Police- public relations; Reforms in Police.


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Law and order administration is one of the most important function performed by the Government. In fact,the survival of administration depends upon maintenance of law and order in a country. The functioning of law and order administration comes under the state list with the Union/Central government having advisory and coordinating role(discussed in last post on this blog). Rapid growth of population,industrialisation,urbanisation,growing political consciousness lead to law and order problems. Agrarian and tribal revolts,political caste and communal violence,labour and student unrest and terrorism are indications of law and order problems.

Law and Order comes under the Ministry of Home affairs' Department of Internal Security in India. As such law and order and internal security are managed under one umbrella at the level of the Union Government. The Ministry of Home Affairs is responsible for matters relating to the internal security of the country and enacts laws for the functioning of the criminal justice system. Refer -

However, 'Police' and 'Public Order' are matters of State Governance and not Union governance, according to Schedule VII, making the management of law and order in India complex.

The First Police Commission, appointed on 17 August 1860, contained detailed guidelines for the desired system of police in India and defined police as a governmental department to maintain order, enforce the law, and prevent and detect crime.
The present Indian Police system is based on the Police Act of 1861. Under this act the police was made subordinate to the executive government. Later several changes were brought about in the structure as well as functioning of the police system in the country,but the basic structure and characteristics are enshrined in the Police Act of 1861 and it continues to dominate over the police system in India. Similarly, the Indian Penal Code(1860) and Criminal Procedure Code(1861) and the Indian Evidence Act were compiled and enacted for effective law and order.
Much before the Independence, superior police officers belonging to the Imperial Police (IP) were appointed by the Secretary of State on the basis of competitive examination. The very first open civil service examination for the service was held in England in June, 1893 and the top ten candidates were appointed as probationers of the Indian (Imperial) Police. However, it is not possible to pinpoint a date on which it could positively be claimed that the Indian Police came into being.
In around 1907, the Secretary of State's officers were directed to wear the letters "IP" on their epaulets to distinguish them from the other officers not recruited by the Secretary of State. In this sense, 1907 could be regarded as the starting point for the Indian Police. However, one must note that the

The Indian Police Service is not a force itself but a service providing leaders and commanders to staff the state police and all-India para-military forces. Its members, who are all at least university graduates, are the senior officers of the police.
With the pas­sage of time Indian Police Service's objectives were updated and redefined, the roles and functions of an Indian Police Service Officer are as follows:
» To fulfill duties based on broader responsibilities, in the areas of maintenance of public peace and order, crime prevention, investigation, and detection, collection of intelligence, VIP security, counter- terrorism, border policing, railway policing, tackling smuggling, drug trafficking, economic offences, corruption in public life, disaster management, enforcement of socio-economic legislation, bio-diver­sity and protection of environmental laws etc.
» Leading and commanding the Indian intelligence agencies like Research and Analysis Wing (R& Intelligence Bureau (IB), Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI), Crime Investigation Department (CID) etc., Indian federal law enforcement agencies, civil and armed police forces in all the and union territories.
» Leading and commanding the Para-Military Forces of India (PMF) which include the Central P Organisations (CPO) and Central Paramilitary Forces (CPF) such as Border Security Force ( Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), National Security G (NSG), Rashtriya Rifles, Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), Vigilance Organisations, I Federal Law Enforcement Agencies, Assam Rifles, etc.
Serve at head of the departments in policy making in the Ministries and Departments of C and State Governments and public sector undertakings both at centre and states, Government India.
» To interact and coordinate closely with the members of other All-India Services and Central Services and also with the Indian Armed Forces
» Last but not the least, to lead and command the force with courage, uprightness, dedication a strong sense of service to the people.
» Endeavour to inculcate in the police forces under their command such values and norms as help them serve the people better.
» Inculcate integrity of the highest order, sensitivity to aspirations of people in a fast-changing and economic milieu, respect for human rights, broad liberal perspective of law and justice and standard of professionalism.

The District Collector's office was formed to be in charge of the police and maintain law and order at the district level as he also functions as a District Magistrate. This has been discussed in previous post on this blog, refer dist admin.

The National Police Commission (NPC) was appointed by the Government of India in 1977
with wide terms of reference covering the police organisation, its role, functions,
accountability, relations with the public, political interference in its work, misuse of powers,
evaluation of its performance etc. This was the first Commission appointed at the national
level after Independence. The Commission produced eight reports between 1979 and 1981,
suggesting wide ranging reforms in the existing police set-up.

For the major recommendations,implementations and status refer -  And also refer to this link for other committees and commissions set up after the National Police Commission -

Lack of political will still comes in between implementing the recommendations of the above as the abovementioned Commissions and Committees recommendations lie unimplemented.


1) Central Bureau Of Investigation - The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is India's premier investigative agency, responsible for a wide variety of criminal and national security matters. It was established on 1 April 1963 and evolved from the Special Police Establishment founded in 1941. The Central Bureau of Investigation is controlled by the Department of Personnel and Training in the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pension of the Union Government usually headed by a Union Minister who reports directly to the Prime Minister. It is India’s official Interpol unit. The CBI draws its officers from the best IPS and IRS officers around the country. It is responsible for investigation into various crimes and national security. The agency specializes in investigating crimes involving high ranking government officials and politicians.

2) The Indian Income-tax Department: Is India's premier financial agency, responsible for a wide variety of financial and fiscal matters.The Tax department is controlled by the Department of Revenue in the Ministry of Finance of the Union Government headed by a Union Minister who reports directly to the Prime Minister. It's officers are drawn from the Indian Revenue Services across the country. The Directorate General of Income Tax Investigation is responsible for investigation into various economic crimes and tax evasion.The special agents and agents are able to carry firearms when they are posted in the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) in the I-T department .The Finance Ministry has recently notified bringing under one umbrella the intelligence and criminal investigation units of the Income Tax department to effectively deal with terror financing cases and transactions that pose threat to national security.The department will now recruit special agents and agents (criminal investigation) under the new wing, half of whom would be recruited or brought on deputation from premier investigative agencies and police organisations of the country.The special agents who will form part of the premier DCI would be able to carry firearms under the rules prescribed by their parent organisation and would be able to tackle any intimidation in course of their new duty of checking and gathering intelligence on tax evasion.
The DCI will be headed by the Director General of Intelligence (Income Tax) and was notified in May this year to tackle the menace of black money with cross-border ramifications.The revamp is aimed at launching 'un-intrusive' investigations against "persons and transactions suspected to be involved in criminal activities having cross-border, inter-state or international ramifications, that pose a threat to national security and are punishable under the direct tax laws."
The commissioners of the intelligence directorate of I-T who are posted in cities like Delhi, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Lucknow will also take up criminal investigation work under the DCI."Criminal investigation relies heavily on accurate and specific actionable intelligence and information of such activities and hence such an arrangement has been made.Separate manpower for the criminal investigation unit will be raised in the next few years when the department gets additional sanction. The intelligence wing of the I-T department has the Central Information Branch (CIB) under it, which is a repository of classified and exhaustive data on taxpayers' financial transactions.

3) Directorate of Revenue Intelligence: The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) is an intelligence-based organisation responsible for the co-ordination of India's anti-smuggling efforts.Officers in this organisation are drawn from Indian Revenue Service(I.R.S.)

4) National Investigation Agency: National Investigation Agency (NIA) is the central agency to combat terror in India. The agency is empowered to deal with terror related crimes across states without special permission from the states. The National Investigation Agency Bill 2008 to create the agency was moved in Parliament by Union Home Minister on 16 December 2008.The NIA was created in response to the Nov 2008 Mumbai terror attacks as need for a central agency to combat terrorism was found. It also deals with drug trafficking and currency counterfeiting.It draws it's officers from IRS and IPS.

5) Narcotics Control Bureau - The NCB is responsible for anti-narcotic operations all over the country. It checks the spread of contraband as well as the cultivation of drugs.The officers in this organisation are drawn from both the IRS and the IPS.

6) Central Forensic Science Laboratory: The Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) is a wing of the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs, which fulfils the forensic requirements in the country. It houses the only DNA repository in South and Southeast Asia.
There are four central forensic laboratories in India, at Hyderabad, Kolkata,Mumbai,Rajkot, Chandigarh,Pune and New Delhi. CFSL Hyderabad is centre of excellence in chemical sciences, CFSL Kolkata in biological sciences and CFSL Chandigarh in physical sciences. These laboratories are under the control of the Directorate of Forensic Science (DFS) of the Ministry of Home Affairs. The laboratory in New Delhi is under the control of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and investigates cases on its behalf.

CENTRAL AGENCIES - Government of India is divided into the Legislative, the Executive and the Judiciary wings, with each performing its respective roles in management of internal security(maintaining cross border peace) and law and order of India.
National Security Council comprising of the Strategic Policy Group, the National Security Advisory Board and a Secretariat represented by the Joint Intelligence Committee (India) is the apex agency looking into the overall security (both internal and external security of India) Law and Order itself comes under the Ministry of Home affairs' Department of Internal Security in India.
For the Executive, the Ministry of Home Affairs is responsible for internal security of India and enactment of laws for the functioning of the criminal justice system in the country.
Several laws have been enacted to ensure general peace in India, maintain law and order and maintain its national integrity. Several law enforcement agencies have been created to tackle the problem of maintaining law and order in the country. Crimes are managed separately by the Criminal courts of the country.

STATE AGENCIES: To perform the task of law and order administration, a state government maintains a separate department called the Home Department. The administrative head of this department is the Secretary,drawn as a rule from the generalist Indian Administrative Service ( IAS). The Home Department administers the police. Under the administrative control of the Home Department comes the executive organisation namely the Police department headed by the Deputy - General Of Police,who as a rule is drawn from the Indian Police Service. He may have an Additional Director General of Police to assist him. The Police Hierarchy comprises Inspectors - General of Police,Deputy Inspectors General of Police,Superintendents of Police and other lower level functionaries.
The basic unit of law and order administration in a state is the police thana headed by the Station House Officer ( SHO) who is assisted by a complement of Inspectors, sub-inspectors,head constables and constables.
The Superintendent of Police in charge of the district police is an important functionary and is subject to control and supervision by a Deputy Inspector - General of Police, who is generally placed in charge of a group of districts.
THe overall command and control are exercised by the Director - General of Police at the state level. Officers in charge of sub units within a district like sub divisions,circles and police stations are subordinate to the Superintendent of Police. The District Police is thus an integral part of the state wide police setup,which is hierarchically structured and held togethe by bonds of strong discipline and control.

The District collector/Deputy COmmissioner who is head of the District administration and apart from his other duties is responsible for the law and order administration in the district police assisted by the police head , the Superintendent of the Police ( District).

In Metropolitan cities, there is the Police Commissionerate system like Mumbai,Kolkata,etc who reports to the state home ministry and is assisted by Joint commissioners of police who is in charge of the city range ( north range,south range,etc),Deputy Commissioner of Police ( incharge of the district) and ACP ( who is the head of sub division),and Station House Officer ( incharge of a police station) and other junior staff.

Delhi which is a Metropolitan has the COmmissionerate system who also enjoys magisterial powers but the reports directly to the Lieutenant Governor who reports to the President ( indirectly to the Central govt.)

The reputation of a state depends on how effectively it is able to maintain law and order withing its jurisdiction as freedom and independence will not have meaning unless such basic issues are properly attended to.

Unfortunately,in view of the prevailing atmosphere of violence in the country,attention to law and order is called for,but,the sad part is that this is being neglected in favour of development administration.
Therefore,it is imperative that law and order is given adequate attention and it is built up both on the infrastructural as well as intelligence and implementation level and its grievances and issues sorted out if we want a sound welfare state where development and law and order go hand in hand otherwise development will be stalled.

A paramilitary is a military force whose function and organization are similar to those of a professional military, but which is not considered part of a state's formal armed forces.
Paramilitary forces(Except the State Armed Police Forces) in India are under the Central govt. and under their orders. The paramilitary forces are:
  • Assam Rifles - Performs many roles including the provision of internal security under the control of the army through the conduct of counter insurgency and border security operations, provision of aid to the civil power in times of emergency, and the provision of communications, medical assistance and education in remote areas. In times of war they can also be used as a combat force to secure rear areas if needed.
  • Border Security Force -  For manning the land borders of the country except in the mountains.
  • Central Industrial Security Force -  It was created for the better protection and security of industrial undertakings.  It is the largest Industrial security force in the world.
  • Central Reserve Police Force - Its primary role lies in assisting the State/Union Territories in police operations to maintain law and order and contain insurgency. It has been of extreme significance in J&K especially during elections.
  • Defence Security Corps-  The role of Defence Security Corps is to ensure the protection and security of designated Defence Installations against sabotage and pilferage. The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and the Defence Security Corps (DSC) provide security at India's nuclear laboratories and Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) establishments, respectively. The CISF is purely a civilian Central government security force and though the DSC is a force under the Ministry of Defence and it comprises mainly superannuated soldiers who are re-employed for a few years.
  • Indo-Tibetan Border Police -  For manning the border with Tibet/China in the Himalaya
  • National Security Guards - Is a special force in India that has primarily been utilized for counter-terrorism activities. It's use in the Taj hotel terrorist attack in Mumbai 2008 has been the most recent and major highlighted one.
  • Railway Protection Force - The duties of the Railway Protection Force include: i) To do all conducive means for the free movement of the railways. ii) Protection and safeguarding of railway property. iii) Protection and safeguarding of passenger,their belonging and passenger area.
  • Rashtriya Rifles -A counter-insurgency/anti-terrorist force made up of soldiers deputed from other parts of the Indian Army, who receive special incentives while serving in the Rashtriya Rifles. It is deployed in J&K to tackle insurgency and terrorism.
  • Special Frontier Force - Conceived in the post Sino-Indian war period as a guerrilla force composed mainly of Tibetan refugees whose main goal was to conduct covert operations behind Chinese lines in case of another war between the People's Republic of China and India. It functions under the Research And Analysis Wing of the GOI.
  • Rapid Action Force - It was created to deal with riots & related unrest.
  • Sashastra Seema Bal -  For guarding the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan Borders.
  • Indian Coast Guard -  Its mission is the protection of India's maritime interests and enforcement of maritime law with jurisdiction over both territorial (including contiguous zone & exclusive economic zone) and international waters.

  • The State Armed Police Forces of India are the police units for dealing with serious law and order situations requiring a higher level of armed expertise than normal in states. The State Armed Police Forces exist in addition to the ordinary police services of the various states.

    The Research and Analysis Wing (RAW or R&AW) is an external intelligence agency of the Republic of India.Its creation was necessitated by the poor performance of the Intelligence Bureau(IB, which then handled both internal and external intelligence) in the recent wars against China (1962) and the Pakistan (1965) convinced the government that a specialized, independent agency was required for competent external intelligence gathering.The primary function of the RAW is collection of external intelligence, counter-terrorism and covert operations. In addition, it is responsible for obtaining and analyzing information about foreign governments, corporations, and persons, to advise Indian policymakers. It has been said that RAW is the "effective instrument of India's national power". RAW is also involved in the security of India's nuclear programme. The working of the RAW is not answerable to the Parliament of India and it works under the Prime Minister of India.

    The present RAW objectives include, and are not limited to:
    • Monitoring the political and military developments in adjoining countries, which have direct bearing on India's national security and the formulation of its foreign policy.
    • Secondly, molding international public opinion with the help of the strong and vibrant Indian diaspora.
    In the past, following the Sino-Indian war of 1962 and due to India's volatile relations with Pakistan, RAW's objectives had also consisted the following:
    • To watch the development of international communism and the schism between the two big communist nations, the Soviet Union and China. As with other countries, both these powers had direct access to the communist parties in India.
    • To control and limit the supply of military hardware to Pakistan, from mostly European countries, America and more importantly from China

    The Intelligence Bureau is India's internal intelligence agency and reputedly the world's oldest intelligence agency. It was recast as the Central Intelligence Bureau in 1947 under the Ministry of Home Affairs. Shrouded in secrecy, the IB is used to garner intelligence from within India and also execute counter-intelligence and counter-terrorism tasks. The Bureau comprises employees from law enforcement agencies, mostly from the Indian Police Service (IPS) and the military. However, the Director of Intelligence Bureau (DIB) has always been an IPS officer. In addition to domestic intelligence responsibilities, the IB is particularly tasked with intelligence collection in border areas, following the 1951 recommendations of the Himmatsinhji Committee (also known as the North and North-East Border Committee), a task entrusted to military intelligence organizations prior to independence in 1947. All spheres of human activity within India and in the neighborhood are allocated to the charter of duties of the Intelligence Bureau. The IB was also tasked with other external intelligence responsibilities as of 1951 until 1968, when the Research and Analysis Wing was formed.

    The workings of these two and their intelligence keep the cycle of law and order going and gets the central and state law enforcement agencies, military and paramilitary forces into motion for the same.

    On 28th August 1997, the Election Commissioner Krishnamurthy made a startling annunciation. According to him, of 1, 37,752 candidates who had contested the General Election to the Lok Sabha in 1996, nearly 1500 had criminal records.
    Criminalisation of politics is present in every party whether ruling or non ruling.
    The radical cause of increasing criminalisation of politics is nexus of muscle power, money power and politics.
    In order to garner a ticket and votes candidates appraise and spend a huge amount compared to meagre limits. These funds are garnered from funds and donations,which come from unhealthy sources like mafias, local dons and corporates,among others. These sources then capture the MLA or MP they funded and make them indebted to them by making the politicians puppets in their hands for giving ends to their vested interest. Thus, people's needs and interests are not bothered about and these people are the ones who rule the roost through their puppet politicians.
    On May 2, 2002, the Supreme Court gave a historic ruling following public interest litigation by an NGO.
    It ruled that every candidate, contesting an election to Parliament, State Legislatures or Municipal Corporation, has to declare the following along with the application for his/her candidature:
    • A candidate's criminal charges
    • The candidate's financial records
    • The candidate's educational qualifications
    If the candidate fails to file any of the above three declarations, the Returning Officer will have the right to reject his nomination papers. The Supreme Court has ruled that all the three declarations will have to be true.
    The Election Commission had sent a notification on June 28, 2002, to all State Election Officers with a view to enforcing it. The Supreme Court's thrust has been that the people and the voters have the right to know about the candidate's criminal record, assets and liabilities and educational qualifications. The Returning Officer has to publish these declarations for the voters' knowledge.
    The Election Commission under T S Krishnamurthy proposed in its 2004 report that Section 8 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 should be amended to disqualify candidates accused of an offence punishable by imprisonment of 5 years or more even when trial is pending, given that the Court has framed charges against the person. In the report the Commission addresses the possibility that such a provision could be misused in the form of motivated cases by the ruling party.
    To prevent such misuse, the Commission suggested a compromise whereas only cases filed prior to six months before an election would lead to disqualification of a candidate. In addition, the Commission proposed that Candidates found guilty by a Commission of Enquiry should stand disqualified.

    The Court held that the right to information - the right to know antecedents, including the criminal past, or assets of candidates - was a fundamental right under Article 19(1) (a) of the Constitution and that the information was fundamental for survival of democracy.

    Well this is just a guideline and the people are unaware about this and continue to vote blindfolded. The criminals will disclose their records on an election form(and most of the time it is not verified whether true or false)but their physical influence outside the booth,monetarily as well as muscle power will not stop inducing people to vote for them. Therefore, it is for us people to wake up, use RTI as well as other sources to vote for the right candidate with all knowledge and throw out this disease as it is thwarting the very ideas of democracy and Constitutional safeguards that our country stands on.

    i) Since the Police administration is based on law made in 1861 and not undergone any significant change, therefore, the colonial attitudes of police personnel still remain. The erstwhile police force of the British Raj who were trained to administer terror over our people for the perpetuation of foreign domination seem to heavily inspire our current Police administration who feel it’s their duty to treat a layman or a common citizen unfairly.
    ii) We need to understand that the idea of having a welfare state envisaged by our constitutional experts stands completely null and void, in absence of a proper criminal justice system. And here, Police machinery plays one of the most important roles in order to set criminal law into motion by lodging FIR’s and conducting unbiased and speedy investigation. Moreover, in order to accomplish the solemn purpose of having a crime free society, more onerous duty is cast on the Police and learned magistrates. There is a well demarcated sphere of activity between the field of crime detection and crime punishment. Investigation of an offence is the field exclusively reserved for the executive through the police department, the superintendence over which vests in the State Government. The executive who is charged with a duty to keep vigilance over law and order situation is obliged to prevent crime and if an offence is alleged to have been committed it is its bounden duty to investigate into the offence and bring the offenders to book. Needless to state the ill consequences which can follow if the police refuses to investigate a cognizable offence (offences in which the police is duty bound to lodge an FIR, without acquiring prior permission of a magistrate in order to investigate the case, together with the power to arrest without warrant) such as theft, murder, dacoity, rape, hurt, assault, robbery, trespass, cheating etc). As per the scheme and policy of the criminal procedure code no investigation in an offence can be commenced without registration of FIR’s.
    iii) Apart from the above, there have also been several studies and commissions set up to study and reform public-police relations and it was found that the public have greater dissatisfaction and disenchantment with the working of the police. Apathy of the police,inefficiency and incapacity of the police has given a poor image to it as people are in fear of even approaching it.
    iv) Recent years have seen an upsurge in terrorism and violence in different parts of the country and the police is expected to take care of law and order to curb the problem. But their failure to do so has led to worsening of the situation and given an all the more bad reputation to the police in the eyes of the common man.
    v) People are unaware of their rights and duties and so there leaves ample scope for the police or for that matter any organisation to take the law in their hands and exploit the common man.

    Let's discuss the reforms in Police that would help resolve the above.

    The police personnel have a vital role in a parliamentary democracy. The society perceives them as custodians of law and order and providing safety and security to all. This essentially involves continuous police-public interface. The ever changing societal situation in terms of demography, increasing rate and complexity of crime particularly of an organized nature and also accompanied by violence, agitations, violent demonstrations, variety of political activities, left wing terrorism, insurgency, militancy, enforcement of economic and social legislations, etc. have further added new dimensions to the responsibilities of police personnel. Of late, there has been growing realization that police personnel have been functioning with a variety of constraints and handicaps, reflecting in their performance, thus becoming a major concern for both central and state governments. In addition, there is a feeling that the police performance has been falling short of public expectations, which is affecting the overall image of the police in the country. With a view to making the police personnel more effective and efficient especially with reference to their, professionalism and public interface several initiatives have been launched from time to time.

     Some of the steps suggested by the National Police Commission in this direction are:
    • To bring about a change of attitude of police personnel so that they
    become people friendly.
    • To bring about more transparency and openness in police working.
    • To improve public image and public participation in police working.
    • To make the police more efficient and effective.

    In order to achieve the above mention direction, the Ministry of Home Affairs with
    the support of UNDP has taken up an experimental project covering nine police
    stations in Rajasthan, Tamilnadu and Assam. One of the major aims of this project is
    to revise the curricula for training of police personnel at State Police Training

    Police sensitisation training has also been initiated to rid the police of their colonial attitudes and high handed behaviour.

    Over working the staff, lack of manpower, improper or no proper infrastructure to carry out their duties,no reward system, no proper growth system,major political and bureaucratic interference and stranglehold,etc.

    The recommendations of the National Police Commission to set up State security boards in order to make the police force more accountable and responsible but unfortunately they have been constituted in only a few states and that too they are not up to the mark.

    The Supreme Court in 2006 gave directives which were to be followed till the states come up with their police acts.

    First was to set up a State Security Commission which would insulate the police form unwarranted political interference. Political control is necessary but it needs to be conditioned in such a manner that political masters cannot take undue advantage. The primary responsibility of this commission is to lay down policy guidelines for service oriented policing, evaluate the functioning of the police and making binding recommendations to the government to that effect.
    Second, the directives provide for a minimum fixed tenure of two years for the Chief of Police and four other police officers on operational duties in the field. The court expressed its shock over the frequent transfer of Superintendents of Police for whimsical reasons and observed that this trend leads to demoralization of the police force.

    Third, the directives call for the separation of investigation from law and order which was also recommended by the Law Commission of India in its 154th report. This would ensure faster, accurate and fairer processes so that rule of law is maintained. Presently, law and order is prioritized over investigation work which leads to loss of material evidence crucial for the case under consideration.

    Fourth, the Court's directive mandate the creation of a Police Establishment Board which would be a departmental body to oversee the transfer and posting of the officials above the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police.
    Fifth and the most important, the judgment directs to set up Police Complaints Authority in states to inquire into allegations of complaint of public against the men in uniform. This is supposed to be an independent body comprised of civil society members to ensure that justice is done without prejudice to any party. However states are trying to dilute the neutrality of the complaint authority by increasing the number of policemen on the Complaint Authority in the guise of independent members. This would annul the efficacy of having a complaint authority.

    However, the states have been reluctant to implement the directives of the Supreme Court. Most of the states have or are trying to pass the new Police Acts but have diluted the directives leaving lacunae in place for police to act discretionarily/arbitrarily and facilitating entrenchment by the political executive. This is a significant blow to all civil society members who turn to state and the police to protect their human rights. The entire campaign towards reform has been compromised by those who want to protect their narrow and partisan interests.
    The Supreme Court has set up a monitoring committee to review the implementation of its directives.

     The eighth report of the NPC recommended that protection available to the police officers from prosecution under section 132 and 197 of the Code of Criminal Procedure which mandate prior sanction of the government in order to prosecute any public servant including police official for any act done in discharge of his official duty be withdrawn or that a proviso be added to the section to initiate automatic judicial enquiry in every refusal to prosecute. This recommendation must be implemented. Making the police more accountable would deter police officials from harassing citizens.
    Structural and institutional changes can only bring in marginal improvements,what is important is attitudinal change on both the police as well as people's side to effectively cooperate with each other for smooth administration.

    Go through the international and national statistical data in this, very important -      AND

    This post would like to conclude with the following thoughts for you to ponder over. Corruption exists, is taken for granted, even celebrated. India is not truly free because like slaves, majority of Indians passively accept injustice.Passive acceptance of injustice is also violence. Disrespect is also violence. Laziness is also violence. We unquestioningly accept injustices at home, on our streets, in our workplaces and from those in public offices and it is us and only us who can change this and make India a better place to live in. True patriotism lies in not just saluting our national flag or standing up for the national anthem, we need to have a purpose in our lives, if not for anyone else, for ourselves and our future generations. You get back what you give. So, we should take all steps to make ourselves aware of our rights and duties towards ourselves and the society for law and order and justice,as well as make ourselves of the hierarchy of the police system as well as other public organisations and use it effectively alongwith RTI in order to report non - performance of duty of officials and reform them from our end as well.

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    The next post will cover :

    Significant issues in Indian Administration:
    Values in public service; Regulatory Commissions;
    National Human Rights Commission;
    Problems of administration in coalition
    regimes; Citizen-administration interface;
    Corruption and administration; Disaster

    Monday, September 24, 2012

    Urban Local Government: Municipal governance: main features, structures, finance and problem areas; 74th Constitutional Amendment; Global Local debate; New localism; Development dynamics, politics and administration with special reference to city management.


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    Municipal governance in India has been in existence since the year 1687 with the formation of Madras Municipal Corporation and then Calcutta and Bombay Municipal Corporation in 1726. In early part of the nineteenth century almost all towns in India had experienced some form of municipal governance. In 1882 the then Viceroy of India, Lord Ripon's resolution of local self-government laid the democratic forms of municipal governance in India.
    In 1919, a Government of India act incorporated the need of the resolution and the powers of democratically elected government were formulated. In 1935 another Government of India act brought local government under the purview of the state or provincial government and specific powers were given.

    For the Census of India 2011, the definition of urban area is as follows:
    1. All places with a municipality, corporation, cantonment board or notified town area committee, etc.
    2. All other places which satisfied the following criteria:
    a) A minimum population of 5,000;
    b) At least 75% of the male main working population engaged in non-agricultural pursuits; and
    c) A density of population of at least 400 persons per sq. km.

     As a result of economic development in India, urbanization is proceeding at a very rapid rate. Cities and towns contribute to more than 60% of the GDP,so one can understand the strong co-relation between urbanization and economic development. So it is imperative to develop an efficient urban or municipal government.

    Urban - Of or in a city or town.


    The purpose of municipal governance and strategic urban planning in a country is to create effective, responsive, democratic, transparent, accountable local governance framework organised according to a rational structure that promotes responsiveness and accountability; to provide responsive policy guidance and assistance to sub-national entities; to strengthen the legal, fiscal, economic and service delivery functions of municipalities; and to foster greater citizen participation in the governance of local bodies.

    Similar to the Panchayati Raj system, the Nagar Palika Act or the Municipalities Act, 1992 set up through the 74th Amendment Act also provides for a three tier municipal system in the urban centres. The size and criteria of these municipal bodies are decided by the state legislature as it is set up under an Act of the state legislature.The Twelfth Schedule of Constitution (Article 243 w) provides an illustrative list of eighteen functions, that may be entrusted to the municipalities. Reservation of seats for ST,SC,OBC & women are similarly provided as is for the Panchayati Raj system. The Nagar Palikas/Municipals are to work as instruments of development and planning and also to handle funds for local activities.

    Let's discuss them below:

    i) Municipal Corporation - It is the topmost of urban local government and is for an urban area/centre with population above 3 lacs. As an institution it is more respectable and enjoys a greater measure of autonomy than other forms of local government.
    It is set up under a special statute passed by the respective state's legislature. However, in an exception, in Delhi ( due to it being the National Capital Territory), the power to set up a Municipal Corporation lies with the Union Parliament.

    ii) Councillors - Members of the Municipal Corporation are elected on the basis of universal adult suffrage for a period of five years and they are called Councillors.
    These Councillors,collectively called the Municipal Council,exercise deliberative functions and the executive functions are performed by the Municipal Commissioner.

    iii) Municipal Commissioner & Mayor - He is an Indian Administrative Services official appointed by the state government and has the executive powers of the government of Municipal Corporations. The other executives known as the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are political executives elected for a period of one year by the members of the Corporation. The Mayor is the titular head of the corporation and presides over the meetings of the corporation.

    These Municipal Corporations are in charge of Wards ( subdivision or district of a town/city) according to its population and representatives are elected from each Ward. The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai which is the civic body that governs Mumbai city is divided in to 6 zones each consisting of 3-5 wards each. Individual wards or collections of wards within a corporation sometimes have their own administrative body known as ward committees.

    Functions of Municipal Corporations:
    Obligatory -  Supply of wholesome water and construction and maintenance of water works, supply of electricity,road transport services,construction,maintenance,naming and numbering of public streets,lighting,watering and cleaning public streets,etc.

    Discretionary - Construction of public parks, gardens,libraries,museums,theatres and stadiums,public housing,planting of trees on road sides and elsewhere,provision of relief to destitute and disabled persons,civil reception of VIPs,registration of marriages,organisation and management of fairs and exhibitions.

    The Delhi Municipal Corporation was recently trifurcated citing better administration as the reason,in to North Delhi Municipal Corporation, South Delhi Municipal Corporation and the East Delhi Municpal Corporation.

    Municipal Councils or Municipalities are set up for an urban area/centre with population of 100,000 or more, however there are exceptions to that as previously nagar palikas were constituted in urban centers with population over 20,000 so all the urban bodies which were previously classified as nagar palika were reclassified as nagar palika even if their population was under 100,000.

    Members of the Nagar Palika are elected representatives for a period of five years. The town is further divided into Wards ( subdivision or district of a municipality/town) according to its population and representatives are elected from each ward. Wards may be grouped together into ward councils. One or more representatives are elected to represent each ward.The members elect a President among themselves to preside over and conduct meetings of the Municipality. A Chief Officer along with other officers like an Engineer,Sanitary Inspector,Health officer and education officer who come from the State Public service and are appointed by the state government to control the executive and administrative affairs of the Municipality.

    The nagar palika is responsible for
    • Water supply
    • Hospitals
    • Roads
    • Street lighting
    • Drainage
    • Fire brigade
    • Market places and
    • Records of births and deaths
    • Solid waste management
    Its sources of income are taxes on water, houses, markets, entertainment and vehicles paid by residents of the town and grants from the state government.

    Nagar Panchayats are for an urban area/centre having a population of more than 30,000 and less than 100,000 inhabitants.
    However, there are some exceptions. All the previous town area committees (urban centres with a total population of more than 5,000 and less than 20,000) are reclassified as Nagar panchayat.

    Nagar panchayats have a chairman with ward members. Membership consists of a minimum of ten elected ward members and three nominated members.And it consist of a Block Development Officer ( commonly known as Executive Officer) ,who is the chief of all administration.


    In urban planning, a Notified area is any land area earmarked by legal provision for future development. The term is used in the Hindi belt region of North India.
    The term also describes a village or settlement with a population between 10,000 and 20,000. A community of over 20,000 is considered a town under Indian law. Each notified area elects a notified area committee for its administration where all members as well as the chairman are nominated by the state government, which function like municipality. There have been various recommendations asking to stop such centralisation in the state govt. hands by setting up these areas when they should actually be under the PRIs.

    It is a semi municipal authority constituted for small towns,and it exists in several states out of which Uttar Pradesh has the largest number. The members may be partly elected and partly nominated by the state govt. or wholly nominated or wholly elected. It is assigned a number of functions like street lighting,drainage,roads,conservancy,etc. The District Collector in some states has been given powers of surveillance and control over the TAC. Following recommendations of the Rural Urban Relationship Committee,1966, that smaller TACs be merged with Panchayati Raj bodies,Madhya Pradesh and Haryana have done so.

    PSUs are set up by the govt. and housing colonies have been set up around them for the staff and workers. These draw people from rural as well as urban areas and this develops into a kind of a very small town,therefore it is named as a Township. These townships are administered by the Municipal corporation or Municipality under which it falls which appoints a Town Administrator for this area who is assisted by a few engineers and technicians that handle functions like water,electricity,roads,drainage,markets,parks,etc. The expenditure on such townships are shared equally by the urban local govt. as well as the respective Industry.

    When a Military station is established in an area,military personnel move in and to provide them facilities for everyday life the civilian population move in like markets,colonies,etc. To administer such areas,the Cantonment boards were set up. There are 63 cantonment boards in India at the moment. These boards are centrally administered by the Defence Ministry. Board consists of elected and nominated members and the officer commanding the station is the President of the Board. An elected member holds office for three years whereas the nominated ones continue as long as they hold office in that station.

    Other agencies/departments are the Pollution Control Board, Housing Boards,Water Supply and Sewage Boards,etc. which are statutory bodies set up under an act of the state government. They help ease the burden off the Municipal bodies as they contain specialists having expertise in the particular field.

    Every state has its development authorities that are the Planning & Controlling Authority for all the urban areas and its members and chairman are appointed by the state government that governs and controls it,for example Delhi Development Authority (DDA) which is an exception as it is also centrally controlled due its sensitive position of being a National Capital Territory. The other states Development Authorities are controlled and governed by their respective state governments.

    Finances supplied to the Municipal bodies are determined and regulated by the respective state governments as per the 74th amendment act. Article 243x states that a state may by law authorise a Municipality to levy and collect property taxes,duties,tolls and fees. The state will lay down the procedure also for the same along with accounting methods.

    Also as per the 74th Amendment act,the Indian Constitution has made it mandatory for every state to constitute a State Finance Commission to review the financial position of the Municipalities and make recommendations regarding distribution of taxes between the states and municipalities.It is also expected to look into the criteria for grants-in-aid and suggest measures needed to improve the financial position of the Municipalities.

    Municipal Corporations Finance - (a) Non-tax Revenue : The non-tax revenue includes fees and fines, grants and contributions from the Government. Among its extraordinary sources may be listed loans, deposits,receipts on capital account, grants for capital works, etc.

    (b) Tax Revenue : The major proportion of income of corporations flows from taxes. It
    ranges from anything between two-fifths and three-fourths of total income. A corporation
    generally has the power to levy the following taxes :
    • Property tax
    • Tax on vehicles and animals
    • Theatre tax
    • Tax on advertisements (other than newspapers)
    • Profession tax
    • Education tax
    • Entertainment tax
    • Tax on consumption and sale of electricity
    • Betterment tax on increase in urban land values caused by the execution of any
    development or improvement work.

    Tax on deeds of transfer of immovable property is collected by the State Government and the amount collected within the area under the jurisdiction of a corporation is transferred to it.

    i) Disqualifications of members of Municipal Bodies follow in principle the practice followed in state legislature disqualifications. But since it is governed by the state legislature who can make laws regarding the same,it is not consistent in all states and that leads to a lot of disparity and non - security among members.

    ii) Election expenses and code of conduct to be better regulated and more powers should be given to the State election commission to do the same.

    iii) The Municipal Councils/ Municipalities have restricted local autonomy as compared to the Municipal Corporations, with more pervasive state control that often climax in dissolution of the former.

    iv) Lack of Finance due to reluctance of the state and central legislators not wanting to divest further taxation and grants powers to them more than what they already have for fear of loss of power. And the municipal bodies fear increasing tax or asking for new tax collection options for loss of popularity among people.

    v) Local bodies are created by state governments and therefore can be dissolved by them as well if not dancing as per their tunes.

    vi) Adding to the above is the drawing of rural people and other city people to a place where there is rapid urbanisation through industrialisation. Law and order becomes difficult,slums develop,etc. leading to multiplicity of problems for these already stressed out urban local governance bodies.

    vii) In spite of many central and state committees sitting and recommending better financial and administrative autonomy for the Municipal bodies, there has been no concrete effort from the legislators side to implement the same.

    viii) The power now seems to have shifted from the state governments to the financial institutions, international donors and credit rating agencies. Finally, the capacity of the government to generate employment directly through anti-poverty programmes would remain limited. The anti-poverty programmes should primarily be focused on provision of basic amenities.

    ix) Lack of consistent and coherent urban development policy, faulty and improper urban planning, coupled with poor implementation and regulation overload in India’s cities.

    x) No proper monitoring system in place.

    It was enacted envisioning democratic decentralization and power to the people. Let's discuss it's important features:
    i) It granted Constitutional status to local bodies and made them mandatory and laid down the procedure for their constitution.

    ii) It provides for reservations in Municipalities at par with the PRIs

    iii) Ensuring timely elections every five years, and incase of supersession,elections to be held before the expiration of six months from date of dissolution,and a proper report to be submitted by the state govt. for dissolving/superseding before the state legislature.

    iv) Setting up of Finance Commission to review the financial position of the Municipalities and make recommendations regarding distribution of taxes between the states and municipalities.It is also expected to look into the criteria for grants-in-aid and suggest measures needed to improve the financial position of the Municipalities.

    v) State Election Commission to ensure timely and fair conduct of elections.

    vi) Setting up of District Planning Committees for Municipal Councils and Nagar panchayats to prepare draft development plan for the district as a whole and submit their draft development plan to the state govt. for review and inclusion in the state plan.

    vii) Setting up of Metropolitan Planning Committee for Metropolis who would submit their draft development plan to the state govt. for review and inclusion in the state plan.

    Global - Local debate refers to an ongoing debate in regard to development at local levels that what should be its guiding principles - The ideas and objectives developed at the local levels or the technological urgencies that could be seen as leading the local level to global development?

    Philosophers defending the idea of local attributes have favoured the arrangement of locally conceived arrangements and locally developed technology. According to this group, the very concept of local arrangement is based on the idea of immediateness and relevance. They believe that requirements fulfilled through local arrangements vary considerably from area to area. It has been argued that a uniform arrangement in the environment of huge diversity and valid clear-cut differences shall not be possible to achieve some uniform arrangement for all local regions. Local arrangements work on the principle of relevance where readiness amongst the people act as the vehicle for implementation. Under this arrangement as schemes developed locally gain high acceptance and is visible and little is lost as there is little resistance.
     It has been further argued that under this local arrangement local resources may be employed in a more meaningful way and much time and resources may not be wasted on training for implementation. Participation under the local arrangement shall be more as a feeling of empowerment and self decision making shall be present. The thinkers maintain that under such an arrangement quick identification shall be possible and more sensitive and responsive solution shall be possible.

    On the other hand a group of thinkers pursuing the idea of a global arrangement, opine that in the absence of a global perspective,a local region shall become myopic in its vision and may witness a very slow rate of growth. Technological resource is a capital extensive area and also an expression of experiences,accidents,innovation,events of success and failures,etc that will help in adopting benchmarks and best practices in local development.
    If any area shall try to keep itself closed to the experiences,innovations,etc of others it may risk a lot being in such limited boundaries and may never think beyond/out of the box than the ones prevailing in society.
    According to the Global thinkers the world is emerging as a global village and showing an attitude of neglect towards this emerging trend shall be extremely risky and undesirable for local development.

    It has been observed that local arrangements operate better when social and technological readiness exists in regards to the factors of implementation. It has also been observed that development at the local level is promoted better in an environment of local arrangement but at the same time technological appreciation shall add to the purpose of the local authorities. It has been observed as well that technological import wherever seen useful shall be customised to meet the local requirements so as to have higher acceptance and minimize resistance to technological essentials.

    A good example of this is NABARD which is a specialised and technologically updated body  for financial assistance for agricultural development.

    New Localism refers to an arrangement where urban local governance is seen provided with a uniform framework under an order of central government. New Localism evolved in the U.K in order to provide a uniform agenda and framework for local governance throughout the nation.
    It was observed that in the absence of some uniform framework, the local governance institutions developed various disabilities and there was widespread inconsistency in regards to the functioning of such institutions. The Tony Blair govt. came out with a solution that was in the form of a framework in which the structure and functions of local self government institutions were specified under an order of the central govt. and they were to be instructed to operate as per the central govt. directives.
    Some concerns have been raised in regards to the imperatives coming from the central govt. for the local govt. institutions and it has been observed that in such an arrangement decentralisation will be forced to the reverse and take a backseat leading to heavy centralisation thus defeating the very purpose of local self governance.

    However, lets take a look at the good practices New Localism has infused in many countries,even though not implemented fully but definitely does give some food for thought and bettering the local self governance. It has been applied as a method of coordination between local governing institutions across a country. It has provided for more autonomy for foundation hospitals. It has provided for a structural framework where service providers in a local region coordinate with one another while executing their schemes. It has provided for a more comprehensive development at local areas as financial management has been become more active with better forged relations with the centre. It has provided for a better networking arrangement through the various agencies operational in a local area.

    The scientific study of Development forces or processes (Dynamics) that produce movement/change inside a group or system.
    The forces viz. developments in Urban Local Government:

    i) Govt. Of India Acts of 1919 and 1935.

    ii) 74th Amendment Act

    iii) Increasing urbanisation(and this is going to only increase in future) as the structural transformation of the Indian economy matures,and as India moves to double-digit growth, the backlog, current and growth needs of urbanization need to be addressed comprehensively.

    iv) Liberalisation,Privatisation and Globalisation.

    v) Activeness of Foreign Institutions and organisations in the development of developing countries and the centrally and state sponsored schemes implementation at the local levels.

    vi) Technological advances like e-governance,etc.

    vii) Increasing participation of people through the works of NGOs and NPOs, Voluntary organisations and civil society.

    While urbanisation can be an engine of economic development and inclusion,unless managed properly,it can create serious socio-economic consequences and disastrous outcomes which would be difficult and impossible to fix.
    Apart from the above mentioned Problem Areas of Municipal Bodies,with time,today's urban planners are busy creating a bureaucratic maze,issuing permits and enforcing planning and building codes,become reactive instead of proactive,corrective instead of pre-emptive.
    We are busy implementing global plans at the local level but till date there is a majority of rural and urban dwellers who do not have access to even the basic amenities/services for a decent living.
    One of the major causes of the abovementioned is the rigid bureaucratic approach towards this with a top-down approach that is a lethargic and unequipped and unskilled one. Recruits to head these urban Municipal bodies are generalists with little knowledge most of the times regarding the subject matter. Therefore, it is necessary for them to be equipped with the knowledge and management practices to build their capacities in order for them to efficiently and effectively handle the growing specific functions of these specific bodies and especially in this LPG era where India is undergoing an economic,social and political transformation.That is where City or Urban Management steps in.

    Along with international organisations like World Bank,etc support the Government Of India has set up a host of programmes and courses for capacity building of urban governance officials and staff to achieve the abovementioned goals. An example:
     The Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI) and World Bank Institute (WBI) have entered in to partnership to specifically support capacity building needs of Indian cities and have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to this effect. Establishing Certification Program in Urban Management is a key initiative of the MOU. The Water and Sanitation Program, South Asia is a key partner in this initiative. The Certification Program has received the endorsement from Government of India’s Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD).

    The Certification Program in Urban Management is designed to enhance the capacities of urban sector professionals who are appropriately trained and have demonstrated their competence to effectively take up challenging responsibilities in urban management. The program seeks to provide urban professionals with a vehicle through which they can gain the latest knowledge on key aspects of urban management, and to develop innovative solutions to confront major issues faced by Indian cities.

     Core Objectives

    To provide a broader, more holistic perspective on the range of issues confronting Indian cities and to explore new approaches to address them;

    To promote an active exchange of experiences and enhance awareness of national and international good practices for improving the accountability and creditworthiness of urban local governments and ensuring effective delivery of services, particularly to the urban poor;

    To assist city managers and senior staff of urban local governments in developing appropriate management, governance, leadership and organizational tools and strategies to enable them to discharge their duties more effectively; and

    To enhance the skills of urban sector professionals and enable them to formulate action plans to meet strategic goals of their institutions.

     Also refer to this article for the Gujarat state efforts recently -

    The Ministry of Urban Development is responsible for formulating policies, supporting and monitoring programmes and coordinating the activities of various Central Ministries, State Governments and other nodal authorities in so far as they relate to urban development issues in the country.

    Its important Programmes/Schemes are:

    i) Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission -
    Objectives of the Mission
    (1) The objectives of the JNNURM are to ensure that the following are achieved in the urban
    (a) Focused attention to integrated development of infrastructure services in cities covered under
    the Mission;.
    (b) Establishment of linkages between asset-creation and asset-management through a slew of
    reforms for long-term project sustainability;.
    (c) Ensuring adequate funds to meet the deficiencies in urban infrastructural services;.
    (d) Planned development of identified cities including peri-urban areas, outgrowths and urban
    corridors leading to dispersed urbanisation;.
    (e) Scale-up delivery of civic amenities and provision of utilities with emphasis on universal
    access to the urban poor;.
    (f ) Special focus on urban renewal programme for the old city areas to reduce congestion; and
    (g) Provision of basic services to the urban poor including security of tenure at affordable prices,
    improved housing, water supply and sanitation, and ensuring delivery of other existing universal
    services of the government for education, health and social security.

    ii) Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small & Medium Towns (UIDSSMT) - This subsumed the existing schemes of Integrated Development of Small and Medium Towns (IDSMT) and Accelerated Urban Water Supply Programme (AUWSP). The objectives of the Scheme are:
    1. Improve infrastructural facilities and help create durable public assets and quality oriented services in cities & towns, Enhance public-private-partnership in infrastructural development and Promote planned integrated development of towns and cities.
    All towns/cities as per 2001 census except 63 Mission cities/Urban Agglomeration covered under JNNURM are eligible to be covered under the scheme. The components for assistance under the Scheme include all urban infrastructure development projects such as water supply, roads, parking space, drainage, solid waste management, sewerage, urban renewal, preservation of water bodies and prevention of soil erosion.

    iii) ADB Funded North Eastern Region Urban Development Programme (NERUDP) - The North Eastern Region Urban Development Programme (NERUDP) Phase-I is being implemented by the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) with the financial assistance from Asian Development Bank (ADB). It covers capital cities of 5 North Eastern States viz. Agartala (Tripura), Aizawl (Mizoram), Gangtok (Sikkim), and Kohima (Nagaland). The project covers priority urban services viz.
     (i) Water Supply,
    (ii) Sewerage and Sanitation, and
    (iii) Solid Waste Management.
    In addition, Project Management and Capacity Development of the ULBs through institutional and financial reforms have also been included so that the ULBs become capable of planning and implementing infrastructure projects.

    Refer to the Ministry's official website -


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    The next post on this blog will cover:

    Law and Order Administration:
    British legacy; National Police Commission;
    Investigative agencies; Role of central and
    state agencies including paramilitary forces
    in maintenance of law and order and countering
    insurgency and terrorism; Criminalisation
    of politics and administration; Police-
    public relations; Reforms in Police.