Attempt the questions individually by clicking on them.
Q.1) Time and again there has been a demand for having dedicated personnel for public health management in India. In view of this, critically analyse the proposal of having a dedicated public health management cadre on health services.
Various committees in the past like Mudaliar committee, Kartar Singh committee have advocated the need for dedicated, trained and exclusive personnel on the lines of IAS to run the public health facilities and also improve the quality of health services. The same need was also reiterated recently by the 12th Five Year Plan and National Health Policy, 2017.
Reasons for having public health management cadre:
- The doctor are ill equipped to work in the state run health program because they have no formal training in infectious disease control, surveillance systems, to draw up budget estimates, community health related problems, lack in leadership and communication skills, have no exposure to rural environments and their social dynamics.
- To address the issues Indian healthcare system is facing such as lack of standardisation, financial management, appropriate health functionaries and competencies including technical expertise, logistics management.
- There is a need for Public Health Official who can coordinate the efforts of doctors/hospitals to reduce duplication of efforts and ensure efficiency in areas like immunization campaigns.
- To keep a check on profit motive private hospitals so as to ensure Quality-Cost match.
- To establish an efficient hospital administration that can address patient grievances, financial and supply side bottlenecks effectively.
- To gain insights into local needs and receive feedback by creating a mechanism for citizen-public health connects.
However, public health management has some drawbacks like:
- Dedicated funds for this will be required- may put burden on the exchequer
- High chances of repetition of the lacunae like corruption, delays and favoritism that exist in other services in public health service as well.
- Talented Private doctors earning lacs may not find the public service alluring.
- It doesn’t address several other issues such as need of indigenous medical devices, western medical education, etc.
The induction of Public Health Cadre on lines of IAS is a positive step but all checks & balances need to be maintained such as infrastructure building, National Health Policy’s implementation and government’s willingness are required to put India high in place of health outcomes on the world fora.
Q.2) Considering Indian government’s lackadaisical approach towards having a clear roadmap for encouraging the use of clean fuel, comment on the need for Indian government to have a clean fuel and energy consumption policy?
India’s imports close to 40 per cent of its commercial energy and this is increasing at alarming rate. This trend has huge implications for energy security of the country. The recent Draft Energy policy by the NITI Aayog seeks to keep India’s economy heavily reliant on fossil fuels even in 2040
and also the recent Economic Survey also highlighted the social cost of renewable energy in comparison to that of coal-based power generation. This points towards a lack of clear roadmap for encouraging the use of clean fuel.
There is a need for a policy purely concentrated on clean fuel and energy consumption because:
- To meet the increasing energy demands sustainably.
- India suffers from chronic energy poverty. Officially, about 300 million people have no access to electricity.
- Possibility of increase in oil prices in the near future.
- The urgency of reducing greenhouse gas emissions-In the Paris climate meet, India has committed to have 40 per cent of its electricity capacity from non-fossil fuel sources. So, there is a clear global signal to upscale renewable energy to mitigate climate change.
- The estimated economic burden of using traditional fuels, including health cost and lost economic opportunities due to poor education of girl children, is estimated to be Rs 30,000 crore.
- Energy from coal comes at a huge environmental and health cost-India is largely dependent on coal to meet its energy needs. Coal meets more than 50 per cent of the current commercial energy needs and generates more than 70 per cent electricity
- There exists a fatal overlap of coal reserves, dense forests, tribal populations, high poverty and backwardness-Mining coal leads to a huge conflict between the local communities on one hand and destruction of dense forests and wildlife which are nearly impossible to regenerate.
- Reducing costs of renewable energy, especially solar and wind power– 24 x 7 solar power is still expensive because of the storage costs but there are large number of areas where solar is competitive or even cheaper than coal power. Wind power has achieved grid parity across the country.
- The National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020- It requires focused policy to develop related indigeneous technologies.
- India’s commitment to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which includes goals to provide basic energy services to all. The government has also committed to provide affordable 24 x 7 electricity to all households by 2019.
- The government is planning India’s energy future based on the goal of 175 gigawatts of renewable energy capacity by 2022.
- Our current energy policy of 2006 is primarily focused on developing fossil fuel resources for electricity and direct use of oil and gas for transport, industrial usage and cooking.
Q.3) Cyber security is the main component of the state’s overall national security and economic security strategies. Do you think India has an effective cyber security measures in place? Discuss the main cyber threats that India faces at present?
According to a recent joint study by ASSOCHAM-PwC, there has been a surge of approximately 350% in cybercrime cases in India registered under the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000 from the year of 2011 to 2014. Today we are at a crossroads intertwined with big data, internet of things, automation, etc.
Recent large scale data steal of about 30 million debit cards, WannaCry ransom ware attack and the scorpene submarine data leak are testimony to the vulnerability of cyber infrastructure in the country
Evaluation of the current cyber security measures in India:
- IT Act, 2000– It seeks to give legal recognition to any transaction which is done by electronically and protect this advancement in technology by defining crimes, prescribing punishments, laying down procedures for investigation and forming regulatory authorities. However, infringement of copyright has not been included, it is silent on taxation and no protection for domain names has been provided.
- National Cyber Security Policy, 2013– It was introduced to build secure and resilient cyber space. Provided for a 24*7 National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC) which would act as the nodal agency under the National Technical Research Organization for the protection of critical information infrastructure. Efficient and effective implementation of the policy is missing.
- Indian Computer emergency Response Team (CERT-In) has been operational as a nodal agency for cyber security incident response. But, it is woefully understaffed.
- National Cyber Coordination Centre has been set up to detect cyber security threats and alert various organizations as well as internet service providers for timely action. But the rivalries between the National Technical Research Organization and the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology impede cooperation.
- National Informatics Centre which hosts the government’s mail servers has been compromised several times in the past.
- National Crisis Management Plan for countering cyber attacks and cyber terrorism has been prepared and being updated annually.
Recently the cyber attacks have increased in frequency and intensity as the attackers can gain control of vital systems like transportation, nuclear plants, banking infrastructure etc. that may lead to power failures, bio-medical attacks, floods and pollution. There are various kinds of cyber threats that India faces today such as-
- Cyber threats in Banking Sector– Fraudulent transfers and frequent critical data leaks.
- Indian enterprises both in the public and the private sector are becoming a frequent victim of ransom ware attacks, phishing, digital forgery etc. Attacks becoming exceedingly complex, targeted and globalised.
- Hackers have been targeting the nuclear and energy sectors– This can lead to disruptions in energy sectors and even making nuclear reactors operable
- Space presents a double opportunity for hackers as satellites are becoming trophy attacks because data steal from rival industry in terms of technology can be a huge time- and money saver.
- Threats loom from hacking and online identity theft to terrorist groups recruiting foreign fighters online.
- Fake News-the internet is the latest means of communication to be abused to spread lies and misinformation.
The threats and challenges also provide opportunity and solutions. For example- integration of agencies involved in cyber security, establishing sectoral CERTs, and ushering public private partnerships to set up research and development cells in cyber security domain are some of the solutions.
Q.4) CBI has been at times referred to as a “caged parrot that has many masters” and there has been demand for providing CBI with greater functional autonomy. In view of this, discuss the reforms needed in CBI?
CBI is the premier investigative agency in the country today, with a dual responsibility to investigate grievous cases and provide leadership and direction in fighting corruption to the Police force across the country. In the hearing of the Coalgate case, the SC had called CBI a caged parrot. There are multiple reasons which have hampered CBIs autonomy, such as-
- There is no CBI Act- It is formed through government resolution and it derives its powers from Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 thus leading to political interference.
- CBI is dependent on State governments for invoking its authority (police is a state subject) to investigate cases in a State, even when such investigation targets a Central government employee.
- There are too many heads for CBI –Lokpal, Ministry of Personnel and Training, CVC with no clarity as to whom should CBI report to.
- Credibility crisis and political pressure- Modification of the CBI report by the executive. CBI has refused to provide information under RTI.
- The agency is dependent on the home ministry for staffing, since many of its investigators come from the Indian Police Service
- Pendency of cases: In various CBI special courts more than 10000 cases are pending.
Various reforms are needed to iron out the multiple problems plaguing CBI today–
- A new CBI Act should be promulgated that ensures the autonomy of CBI while at the same time improving the quality of supervision.
- The new Act must specify criminal culpability for government interference.
- The appointments need to based as per the Lokpal Act which calls for a three-member committee made up of the prime minister, the leader of the opposition and the chief justice of the Supreme Court to select the dire.
- The CBI needs to develop its own dedicated cadre of officers who are not bothered about deputation and abrupt transfers. The CBI did recruit some officers in the past to its cadre, but that effort has gone nowhere, and all senior posts in the CBI are now held by Indian Police Service (IPS) officers.
- There needs to be a consideration regarding guaranteeing the CBI the kind of autonomy that the Comptroller and Auditor General enjoys that is, he is only accountable to Parliament.
- A more efficient parliamentary oversight over the federal criminal and intelligence agencies could be a way forward to ensure better accountability, despite concerns regarding political misuse of the oversight.
- A need for fresh look at the service conditions for direct recruitment to the CBI– It is not really popular among the youth who are looking for Central government employment through the Union Public Service Commission examination route.
- Financial autonomy: Currently receives funds for functioning from Ministry of Personnel and Training. The body should determine its own expenditure, so it can avail best training and resources needed for its efficient functioning.
- Training in forensics, new technologies with adequate infrastructure is needed for its effective functioning.
This will usher in the much needed functional autonomy in the CBI.
Q.5) Considering the growing importance of the Internet in personal life, as well as its growing use to challenge governmental authority, the government’s decision of “Internet shutdown” may be an infringement on the fundamental right of speech and expression. Critically discuss.
- In 21st century, the internet has assumed an increasingly important place in our lives. From banking to political speech, and from complex medical procedures to the purchase of basic necessities, important aspects of our economic, social, and cultural life now depend upon the Internet. Many of the fundamental rights guaranteed by our Constitution — the freedom of speech and expression, the freedom of association, the freedom of trade — are exercised in significant part on the Internet.
- On the other hand growing use of internet by general masses has become the tool for propagation of anti-national and anti-governmental campaign and spread of rumors against ruling elite which challenges the governmental authority.
- However, it’s shut down in the name of maintaining law and order is certainly the infringement of peoples’ fundamental rights which is also backed by UN. It also shows the inability of the governmental authority to deal with the law and order situations.
- Internet is a key enabler of fundamental rights like freedom of speech and expression. Frequent disruptions through internet clampdown threaten the democratic fabric of our nation. However, what the government fails to see — besides the fact that actions like these are unconstitutional — is that this is stalling India’s economic growth.
- Internet shutdown costs India’s business opportunities. A Brookings Institution study of 19 countries suggests that the maximum loss was incurred by India ($968 million), followed by Saudi Arabia ($465 million) and Morocco ($320 million) in the year 2017 alone.
- India’s GDP would rise by Rs 67 lakh crore by 2020, if 100 per cent Indians had access to the internet. The report cautions: “As the digital economy expands, it will become even more expensive for nations to shut down the internet. Without coordinated action by the international community, this damage is likely to accelerate in the future and further weaken global economic development.”
- Pushing, if not coercing, citizens into opting for digital transactions through the demonetisation drive and other such paperless initiatives and continually disrupting internet services in various parts of the country cannot exist in the same space.
- While the United Nations Human Rights Council passed a resolution on July 1, 2016 condemning network disruptions and measures adopted by states to curb online access and/or dissemination of information, Victorian-era laws still followed by India are a big hurdle in the UNHRC’s goal.
- Whereas disruptions in the fair Internet service has its own consequences, in all the aspects it violates individual’s fundamental rights which is not at all welcome in a country claiming to be the world’s biggest democracy.
- Moreover, to attract the balance between fundamental rights and state’s security, the Supreme Court of India has insisted that the state’s rights-infringing action must be “proportionate”: that is, there ought to be no greater invasion of the individual’s right than what is strictly necessary to achieve the state’s goal.
- If the government wishes to keep law and order, then it must find other, less drastic ways of doing so, such as increasing security, perhaps a curfew, or even winning the trust of the people and addressing their grievances.
Q.6) Social media can be used not only as a medium of protest but also as a tool to mobilise people. Do you think social media has grown up to become an important pillar of democracy? Discuss.
- Social media also termed as online activism is the collective of online communications channels dedicated to community based input, interaction, content-sharing and collaboration.
- With its huge network having spread like net it plays very significant role in quick dissemination of information with mass mobilization in quick time. Infact in today’s digitalized world, it has become a tool for the common masses to raise their voices and address their grievances and can definitely be termed as the important fourth pillar of democracy.
- Social Media has played very significant role in mobilizing people and forming protest across the world where we witnessed the power of medium which started as an online discussions and ended up as street protests (sometimes violent) such as the Arab Spring, the Occupy Wall Street Movement, the Jallikattu Protest, and the Shahbagh Square Movement.
- The increasing use of social media in today’s world has empowered the society and individual to be connected with the world in quick time. This provides platform to individuals to protest even by being at home (eating, walking or lying on bed) and supply opinion and support to any issue from anywhere in the world.
- Expressing the concerns of being assaulted, the women across the world who were earlier feeling alienated have now found hundreds of companies across the world through online media and have raised their voices against the same.
- Moreover, Twitter and Facebook are online platforms where people more often than not speak to not one person in particular, but shout into a void and sometimes in the garb of anonymity. The campaign through online seems to be another period of renaissance where people questions the age old practices which are radical with suitable logic and arguments such as women education, women empowerment, equality of status, orthodox cultural practices etc.
- The modern world of digitalization with increasing use of Internet and its penetration into the remotest areas has certainly provided a platform to common masses. The Government also empowers the citizens and provides facilities with its various schemes and policies like Digital India Mission, Big Data, Public Internet Access Programme, Improving Digital Infrastructure, Digital Empowerment, Expand Internet Connectivity in rural areas and boost manufacturing of electronic goods in the country etc.
- Such initiatives have certainly empowered the common masses by providing platform to raise their dissent voices and address their grievances. With such activism, the Social Media has certainly grown up to become the fourth important pillar of democracy.
Q.7) This is a microcosm of the role the Indian state has often played in the agricultural sector. Its policies have created artificial incentives that are unsustainable, an inefficient drain on public funds, or both. Critically analyse. What are the major reforms on which Indian agriculture policy should focus up on?
- Indian Agriculture sector accounts for 18 per cent of India’s gross domestic product (GDP) and provides employment to 50% of the countries workforce. Being the largest producer of pulses, rice, wheat, spices and spice products in the world, the agricultural sector in India still faces many challenges. This becomes even worse when Government lacks in supporting the farmers and failing to fulfill the promises.
- For example; the Madhya Pradesh Government back in 2007-08 promised to give Rs. 150 above the MSP per quintal to farmers. With the allurement of this bonus, a large segment of farmers in the state shifted to the crop. But the Govt. has taken back the promises in 2014 leaving the farmers holding the bag. It fed into the resentment that may eventually erupt in widespread farmer agitations.
- Such actions of the government are termed as microcosm (small world) of the role played in Indian agricultural sector where promise breaking has become a culture.
- In the developing countries the government initiatives and support is utmost important to protect the agriculture sector and increase in its productivity. Indian Government with its various schemes such as Fasal Bima Yojana, Krishi Sichai Yojana, Kisa Credit Card, Krishonnati Yojana and various missions on food security and food procurement etc. supports the Indian agricultural sector. However, still several incidences like farmers’ suicides, corruption is food procurement, and issue with MSP etc. shows vulnerabilities of this sector which needs immediate action.
- The periodic loan waivers scheme by the government widens the fiscal deficit, costing hugely on public funds with no advantageous return shows inefficient use of resources. Such steps of waiving loans are a step which is against the long term sustainability.
- Failure of government in supporting and reviving the farm land after devastated by floods, draughts and other natural calamities shows its unwillingness to deal with the situations. Such microcosm role played by state costs hugely in productivity and providing incentives to the farmers.
Major Reforms Required:
- Successful, truly transformative agricultural reforms will require work on three levels. Firstly, the government needs to come out of the Mandi system providing greater hands to public sectors which can be made possible by switching from Public Distribution System to Direct Benefit Transfers that too based on the current market prices of the commodities.
- Improving farmer efficiency and productivity requires a second level of reforms aimed at inputs.
- For example: the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana aims to extend irrigation cover to all forms and maximize water-use efficiency over a period of five years with an outlay of Rs50,000 crore. In a water-stressed yet groundwater-dependent country like India, this is only possible with comprehensive rural electrification, allowing for techniques such as drip irrigation.
- The other major reform needed here is access to formal credit. The current dependence on informal credit leaves farmers beholden to middlemen and traders who are often the credit suppliers, thus undercutting the former’s bargaining power.
- The third level of reforms require structural change in agricultural sector like drastically reducing number of people working in farm sector and entire endeavour must be corporatized to the extent possible.
- There is no feasible way to make such a fragmented agricultural economy workable. Relaxing the rules for foreign direct investment in retail to improve agricultural logistics is well and good, for instance—but taking advantage of improved supply chains effectively requires scale. So does accessing credit, rationalizing crop rotation and inputs, and weathering seasonal risks.
- Measures such as enabling large-scale contract farming and corporate farming will help here—but the only genuine solution is job creation in non-agricultural sectors, a long-haul target. Rolling back the tradition of marginal farming will in turn allow for the dismantling of the MSP system—instituted in the 1960s to facilitate the Green Revolution and long past its sell-by date.
- The agricultural sector is one of the handfuls where inelastic demand for the products, the deleterious public effects of supply shocks and inherent risks for suppliers mandate a government role.
- The trick is to limit that role to the essential, improve its efficiency and allow the market to operate unfettered to the largest extent possible. That will require expending more political capital than any government has been willing to do so far.
Q.8) Public health and education programmes are the best way to tackle India’s hunger problem that is one of the worst in the region. Comment.
The dismal state of India’s hunger condition can be seen from the fact that India has highest number of hunger people in the world and its ranking in Global hunger index has been constantly decreasing
Some experts believe that best way to tackle India’s hunger problem is to focus on public health and education programmes because:
- Research on cross-state differences in child nutrition outcomes shows that the greatest social welfare benefits from direct intervention by the government to improve the lot of the bottom 40 per cent can come if it focuses on two long-neglected quasi-public goods.
- First, public health including communicable disease and vector control, quality drinking water, drainage, sewerage and solid waste disposal in every city, town and village in the country. Household and public toilets are an element of the solution but nowhere near the complete solution.
- Second, universal primary education and literacy to a global standard that is visible in learning outcomes.
- Improvements in public health education and public health facilities clearly have positive effects on nutrition outcomes. The ICDS programme seems to have helped in providing public health education to mothers and thus contributed to the outcome.
- Literacy can help in acquiring knowledge about hygiene, nutrition and sanitation. The government must ensure that every citizen has the education that she is supposed to acquire with the completion of primary education. But this education must also be made more relevant by providing information on matters that will improve their lives (health, hygiene, nutrition) and equip them to find useful information.
- Thus research clearly indicates that if Government improves public health and education, it has clear cut positive effect on hunger, Therefore need of the hour is to increase public expenditure on health and education from the current dismal ratios and also to reverse the ongoing process of privatization of health and education.
Q.9) According to a report, none of the silence zones in the country came anywhere near the national standard. There is a need to focus on implementation rather than just demarcating specific areas as no silence zones. What are the points where lacuna lies in the implementation? What should be done to curb noise pollution at these zones?
Silence Zones are the areas within 100 meters of the boundary of:
- Hospitals, including clinics and nursing homes
- Educational Institutions
- Courts, including Government offices or any place where adjudication takes places
- Religious places including masjids, mandir, churches, gurdwaras etc.
As per the standards, the decibel level in silence zones should not exceed 50 dB during the day and 40 dB during the night. Under the Motor Vehicle Rules, the noise range for horns has been fixed between 93 dB and 112 dB. Exposure to sound beyond 93 dB for eight hours can cause irreversible hearing loss.
Various sources of noise are: industry, road traffic, rail traffic, air traffic, construction and public works, indoor sources(air conditioners, air coolers, radio, television and other home appliances)etc.In Indian conditions, indiscriminate use of public address system and DG sets has given a new dimension to the noise pollution problem.
Why lacuna in implementation?
– The central government brought into force an amendment to the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000, which made individual states responsible for specifically notifying these zones
– State governments have failed to notify silent zones
– While there exist various rules and regulations for establishment of shops/industries near the designated silence zones, the rules are hitherto followed by people nor are they enforced by officials
– A lack of civic sense in citizens leads them to honk horns almost all the time on roads leading to the breach of silence zone norms.
Measures that can be taken to curb noise pollution
– appropriate land use planning
– creating buffer zones for sensitive receptors
– Installation of noise barriers for hospitals, schools, colleges and old age homes
– enforcement of maximum decibel level of vehicles
– establishment of no-honking zones especially for residential areas and silence zones
– development of poro-elastic road surfaces for traffic noise control
Framing rules and regulations will help in enforcing silence zone norms but the real change in the situation would only occur after common people change their mindset and respect the boundaries of silence zones.
Q.10) Extreme volatility in the prices of some food commodities has, in recent years, been hurting producers as well as consumers, while also disrupting certain economic activities. Critically comment. What steps should be taken by government in this regard?
Food prices have been fluctuating wildly over the last few years, hurting both consumers and producers. Food prices are being driven up by a number of factors including bad weather, low stocks, and unstable commodities markets.
Changing petroleum prices, crop yields, food stock levels, and exchange rates are also some of the reasons, but trade policies and a lack of reliable, up-to-date data are also driving the volatility.
Price fluctuations, or normal volatility, are a common feature of competitive markets. They provide important signals to producers and consumers.
But the efficiency of this system breaks down when economic shocks cause prices to move in increasingly uncertain and precipitous ways. When shocks surpass a certain level, the price system becomes redundant, and traditional policy prescriptions and coping mechanisms tend to fail.
Extreme volatility hurts poor consumers. Unexpected swings in food prices greatly endanger the food security of poor households in developing countries, who spend as much as 70 percent of their incomes on food.
Excessive volatility also hurts producers. When price uncertainty increases, poor, risk-averse farmers invest less and use fewer inputs, making them more likely to remain in poverty.
Steps that can be taken:
Market-friendly approaches are needed to limit volatility
– Yield-enhancing investments: Agriculture has been neglected for too long. More investments must be made, particularly in research and development and infrastructure that promote irrigation as well as drought-resilient crops and their hybrids.
– Trade policies: It is important to complete the Doha Round of negotiations so that trade-distorting subsidies can be reduced, and perhaps include tighter rules on export restrictions.
– Improving market transparency: Information gathering and dissemination efforts should be intensified. The efforts should focus on information about both the real market and related financial transactions.
– Reforming policies for grain-based biofuels: Introducing call options for biofuels—a market-compatible instrument—would guarantee that producers shift grain from producing biofuels to providing food during crises—a mutually beneficial outcome.
– Commodity exchanges: The regulatory framework governing commodity exchanges must also be reviewed to reduce speculative behavior and thus limit volatility.
High and volatile food prices are a result of the neglect of agriculture over the last seven decades. As long as the demand for food continues to rise faster than yield growth, markets will remain tight and prices will remain high and volatile. Thus, in the long run, the only real solution to excessive volatility is to invest much more in agriculture.
Q.11) Citizens’ Charter in India aimed at delivering governance to people and proposed an ‘Action Plan for Effective and Responsive Government was adopted. Explain the role of citizen’s charters in public administration Do you think citizen charter have been effective in India?
Citizen charters aimed at removing the sluggishness which infests the public delivery system in India by introducing accountability and responsibility in governance. It will establish a mechanism in every department, organization or scheme having public interface under centre, state or Union Territory for timely delivery of public goods and services. In case of non-delivery and other malpractices, the charter allows the citizen to seek grievance redressal through making complaint at several levels thus creating the onus on public officers to assure provision of services and goods.
The three essential aspects emphasised in good governance are transparency, accountability & responsiveness of public administration. Citizens; Charters initiative is a response to the quest for solving the problems which a citizen encounters, day in and day out, while dealing with the organisations providing public services.
The role of charters in public administration can be discussed as:
- Enhance Openness and information about service delivery.
- Help public agencies to manage the expectations of service users.
- Provide a framework for consultations with service users.
- Encourage public agencies to measure and assess performance.
- Make public agencies more transparent by telling the public about the standards they can expect – and how agencies have performed against those standards.
- Push public agencies to improve performance where promised standards have not been achieved.
- Increase satisfaction of service users.
- Provision of redress when services are not delivered to the published standards.
Q.12) You have joined an organization as an administrative head, which has a large public interface. You want people’s Cooperation in redressal of their grievances. There is a complaint/suggestion box at the reception of the office. On enquiry you found that it is empty and has not been opened for the last one month. What specific steps you would take
(a) To seek people’s cooperation in redressal of their grievance.
(b) To disseminate relevant information to people.
Discuss the various steps along with merits and demerits of each step.
(a) It can be observed, that with time the people might have lost faith in the organization as there was no actions on previous complaints that were put in the suggestion/complaint box. To seek people’s cooperation the various options can be
- The head should take previous complaints and solve them first then issue instructions to open the box daily. This will ensure timely action.
- Some senior can be appointed to filter the complaints/suggestions. This will make sure the important issues are addressed first. However this requires an experienced person.
- Acknowledgement should be issued that complaints have been received, matter is looked into and solution will be provided soon. A special cell can also be made for this.
- While working, some common problems can be identified so that systemic reforms are taken and load of complaints is decreased.
- Helpline can be made for tracking applications by people.
- Cubicles with glass separation can be setup in office to see what employees are doing.
Though it may improve the things but it will create a sort of financial crunch on the organization.
- Token system can be started where every file can be given a token number specifying how many days will it take to do the work.
(b) To disseminate relevant information’s to people the various options can be-
- Under section of RTI act, 2005 suo-moto disclosure can be made so that most of information comes in public domain.
- News bulletins and wall writings can be started up so as to make the information accessible to public.
- The head can also take the help of AIR,DD, TV. Since the organization has a large public interface, this is a good option.
- Newspaper classifieds or advertisements can also be used to provide relevant information to the people.