NEXT, we have the view from Rome, the headquarters of the three important organisations – FAO, WFP, and IFAD. Rajendran tells us that multilateral agencies provide a forum for standard-setting and sharing of best practices. India is now seen as an important player in all the global fora. With the exception of China, our position on Responsible Investments in Agriculture has received the endorsement from all the G20 countries.
CV Ananda Bose, who is now our Governor in West Bengal calls the IAS the ‘last mile delivery boys of India’ – as he says ‘Take it, brick by brick, and leave it Marble’. He also lists the seven cardinal points of Mission Karamyogi, and he narrates the parable of the shark in the fish tank to ensure that that the fish are always agile, alert and responsive to potential threats!
Legendary civil servants
Debashish Gupta then talks about the legendary civil servants – Akrura, Bheeshama Pitamah , Vidura , Kripacharya and Drona in the times of Mahabharat, Confucius and Lao Tzu in China, Abu Hanifa of Medina and Todar Mal, who organised the land revenue system which was in vogue in several parts of the country, till recently. The civil servant thus provides the ‘alphabet of governance’ whatever be the nature of the regime.
Hasmukh Adhia then expounds the ten cardinal principles for Minimum Government Maximum Governance. These include clarity of purpose, uncoupling and steering, performance management, citizen-first approach, organisational empowerment leading to a change in organisation culture, need for a robust training eco system, incorporating Karma Yoga and effective communication with all stakeholders.
Today’s mighty oak was just a nut which held its ground: This is the context in which Jayant Dasgupta talks about India and GATT, later the WTO, an agreement signed by CD Deshmukh, one of the founding members of the IIC, who also topped the ICS. He also gives practical pointers to the current and future negotiators at the WTO. This, along with the Rome triad, are institutions firmly held by the IAS.
Assam law & order
The next chapter is from JP Meena, who talks about his experiences of maintaining law and order in Assam. It is often said that law is with the judiciary, and order is with the cops – what does the IAS do? Well, we provide the crucial connection between the two – the ad!
Jugal Mahapatra writes that ‘mistakes are the portals of discovery’ and he discusses how administration helped develop the institutional mechanism for a disaster-resilient Odisha. The Disaster Management Act was enforced by the Collectors, and using their extraordinary powers to manage extraordinary situations, it was the lodestar for India. The great thing about India is learning from each other’s best practices – just as the CARUNA platform did for us during Covid-19