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Prime Minister’s Mission Merit

Transparency and accountability are the touchstones of governance” in the words of Prime Minister Modi. Every society craves for good governance because it is good governance which decides and describes their well being, their future and the overall progress of the nation – be it economic development, technological prowess, robust national security and stability. The […]

In a country like India, where new development challenges have to be achieved in attaining PM Modi’s vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat, the executors have to be professionally competent and selected on merit.
In a country like India, where new development challenges have to be achieved in attaining PM Modi’s vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat, the executors have to be professionally competent and selected on merit.

Transparency and accountability are the touchstones of governance” in the words of Prime Minister Modi. Every society craves for good governance because it is good governance which decides and describes their well being, their future and the overall progress of the nation – be it economic development, technological prowess, robust national security and stability. The standard of the state administration depends upon the caliber of the government servants selected by the Public Service Commission and the Staff Selection Commission. The framers of the constitution realised that the democratic system would only by effective if civil servants would be appointed solely on the basis of merit, by open competition and rejected the “spoils system”. Hence the creation of the UPSC and State Public Service Commissions. The concept of governance is as old as human civilization and a true welfare state is always well governed – a governance that is just, effective, efficient, equitable, transparent, responsible, transparent and accountable. In a country like India where public services and the welfare machinery form the core of the executive, selections of public servants who will execute good governance becomes the corner stone of administrative efficiency. Hence, selection on merit of public servants is a sine qua non to good governance.

Fair selection is recruitment based on pure merit which could be competency, capability, ability, efficiency, initiative, integrity, dependency, industry, supervision, personality, team spirit, leadership, alertness, physique, academic achievement and suitability and, apart from all, free from political pressure. And this is assured through written examinations, physical tests (where applicable) and also interviews in some cases.

Fair selections are the only means to dismantle the vicious circle of favoritism, nepotism and corruption. If a person is selected by giving consideration, he will reap many more times than he has sown; he not only takes advantage of the poor and needy throughout his life but also cheats the government and destroys the institution and the trust reposed in him by the public. Transparent and fair selection is also an accomplishment of the right to equal opportunity in matters of public employment as expressed by Article 16 (2); this ensures that people of different religions, races, castes, sex, regions or languages find their rightful place in the system, making it more inclusive.

The Prime Minister is of the strong conviction that greater transparency in the selection process and the resultant public scrutiny create incentives for better performance and promote and maintain the highest levels of integrity, impartiality and accountability. The people’s faith in the government increases especially when they see that the government, which provides for their present and future, has people of integrity, competence and eminence. A meritorious administration reflects a stable state. Efficiency and effectiveness of a public administration can only be realized through the recruitment of meritorious civil servants. A competitive merit based selection process also instills faith in the public and future aspirants. Hence, the inclusion of specialists and professionals by PM Modi in several arms of the government in the interest of growth, efficiency and development. Merit and transparency are a corollary of an efficient selection process which will only optimize the welfare of the citizens.

In a country like India, where new development challenges have to be achieved in attaining PM Modi’s vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat, the executors have to be professionally competent and selected on merit.

Following the vision of the Prime Minister, several states have very ably shown the way to the country in ensuring totally transparent meritorious selections to government services. In Haryana, there has been a complete metamorphosis in the selection process- be it the Haryana Public Service Commission or the Haryana Staff Selection Commission. Since 2019, the mode of exams and interview in the HPSC has undergone a total change to ensure merit, impartiality and transparency. In the last 9 years, the HPSC has selected over 4500 candidates and the HSSC has recruited over 95000 candidates purely on merit.

A young and growing workforce with infinite potential has great aspirations and will certainly fulfill the quest of Atmanirbhar Bharat. The image and faith of the concerned government will improve in the eyes of the public. PM Modi has always promoted his vision of merit and efficiency in that “Our Government’s approach has been ‘Reform with intent, perform with integrity and Transform with intensity ……… The State Public Service Commissions have a critical role to play in easy, effective and efficient governance by way of streamlining the selection process and making it transparent.” Accordingly, the Modi Government has always propagated the touchstones of legality, probity, merit, transparency, objectivity and bona fides, in line with a New Strong India.

The author is a former Chairman, Haryana Public Service Commission. His views are personal.

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