Oh really! The UP bureaucracy has a voice

Finally, the UP bureaucrats have found their voice. They could protest the unwarranted suspension of young lady bureaucrat Durga Shakti Nagpal by chief minister Akhilesh Yadav because she had taken on illegal mining by sand mafia.

As everyone knows, the UP mafia enjoy clout in every regime, the CM’s contention that action was taken to avert communal tension after she had demolished a wall of a religious place will hold little water. This is despite the villagers sharing their angst over the demolition of a wall which they claimed had been unanimously approved by gram panchayat about a year back. Again it is a subject of probe which the CM should have ordered before hurrying up with suspension.

Nonetheless, without going into the merit or demerit of this particular case, the rulebook demands the state government to take the officer’s clarification before initiating disciplinary action. Why there was this hurry to suspend the bureaucrat is hard to understand when they have an easier tool called ‘transfer’ to handle inconvenient officers.

I will quote a veteran bureaucrat SN Shukla according to whom, “The suspension order is clearly unsustainable in view of the standing orders of the state government that suspension should be resorted to only if the charge is serious enough to result in removal from service, which apparently cannot be said to be the case in this matter. Moreover, under Rule 3 of the All India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules 1969, suspension can be done where articles of charge have been drawn up, which does not seem to have been done in the present case.”

However, what seems to amuse me rather is the new found freedom that the bureaucrats of the state have started enjoying. None of us saw them rushing to the chief secretary petitioning them against government action during Mayawati’s regime. In fact, they kept silent even after one of their colleagues died under mysterious circumstances. Such was her fear.

Apparently, the choice for the people in the state is limited to autocracy or mobocracy, which Mayawati and Akhilesh Yadav governments represent. During Maya’s regime babus couldn’t reach her cabinet secretary, what to talk about the CM herself. But they played cricket with the new CM. The problem now is of mobocracy -it’s a free for all. Too many decision makers in the government, which the CM has to own as an administrative head.

But I wonder what is good for the state, autocracy or mobocracy? Because it now appears people in power have redefined democracy.

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