1. With overlapping and sometimes even conflicting interests and mandates, local governing bodies in Indian cities portray a messy picture. What course corrections would you suggest in order to improve local governance and public service delivery in cities?
Two parts in the question
Part 1 : What are the overlapping and conflicting interests?
Developmental planning: state governments have state planning board and according to 243ZE there has to metropolitan planning committee. There exists a conflict wrt planning for the development process (Top down or bottom up).
Fund devolution: central government devolves fund to state government and further states devolve it to municipality…however with 13th and 14th finance commission recommendations centre is devolving funds directly to municipality and here overlapping and conflict exists.
Interference of state government in local governance — lack of political functional autonomy
Bureaucratic hurdles, which delay the implementation of works
Stress on urban infrastructure due to urban sprawl and increasing immigration
Lack of clarity of functions which sometimes overlap and result in duplication of effort
Many unauthorised, illegal layouts, slums, expansion of city limits adds pressure on ULB’s
Obsolete way of functioning and no integration with ICT.
Part 2: suggestions
Better departmental coordination and information sharing (Utilize Digital India)
(Explain how digital India can be used for departmental co- ordination like computerisation, information sharing etc. )
Enhancing the resources available to Local bodies (Utilize Make in India)
Fiscal relations with state government should be augmented.
Amendment to ‘Municipal Acts’ giving more autonomy decision making power to local bodies (eg: Haryana Municipal Amendment Act)
Effective implementation of initiatives like SMART CITY, AMRUT etc
Tax reforms, Ensuring private and community participation.
Public Service Delivery
Enhancing e-governance by citizen charter, RTE, speedy delivery etc (sevottam model) elaborate on sevottam model
Make use of ‘Digital India’ in e- governance (e- Kranti) elaborate on- e kranti
Implementation of Effective ‘Grievance Redress Mechanism’.
Right based approach in service delivery (Right to service, Kerala)
In suggestions or measures try to elaborate on first two most important points in detail and later just enumerate 2 or 3 points and move on to the next question.
2. How do you reconcile the idea of distributive justice and the policy of reservations? What is your take on the ongoing debate whether reservations should be scrapped? Critically discuss.
The idea of social justice is to seek an egalitarian society, with absence of oppression, exclusion and equality of access and opportunity
To meet this end policy of affirmative action is being followed in many democracies
The policy of affirmative action can take many forms ranging from a) enacting any indiscriminate on laws b) preferential spending to c) reservation in education and employment under state under art 16 of the constitution
Reservation in employment under states is one of the many forms of preferential treatment that seeks to supplement and complement other affirmative action policies
In highly stratified societies like India the affirmative action seeks to compensate the historic social, political and economic exclusion by political reservation and by reservation in education and employment
Though initially provided for 10 years time the reservation policy is still continued for two reasons
The reservation in economic sphere had not led to change in social lives and attitudes
Those who have already benefited from this policy are reluctant to let go of the benefits and other socially and economically well-off sections also want be included as backward classes eg: patidars, thakurs etc
Reservation is necessary for those who have been marginalized but the current form has to rationalized and improvised to see that any development can be measured as objectively as possible
The judiciary has also played a very important role in making improvement in the system by setting upper limit for reservation. Taking organizational efficiency into account while promotions etc
Introducing creamy layer for SC and ST categories as well
Limiting reservation benefits for at most 3 generations for a particular family
People who are already group A officers should not be allowed to avail benefits of reservation if they are applying for same class of jobs.
Stringent verification process for creamy layer criteria
In promotions after few promotions strict efficiency standards have to be followed so that organizational efficiency and moral at least at the planning level are not compromised
3. Make in India must pave way for indigenization of defense and space technology in order to bring India on the forefront of global production and supply chain. Evaluate the potential of Make in India campaign in this regard.
Make in India (MII) is the government’s initiative to encourage companies to manufacture their products in India. Its a national program designed to transform India into a global manufacturing hub. Apart from boosting Indian industry, the move is also expected to help in state security.
The MII campaign has immense potential for indigenization of defence and space sectors as evident from the following points:
The government’s aim to make it mandatory for strategic sectors of defence, space and atomic energy to use ‘Made in India’ chips, aimed at meeting national security standards
Currently >60% of defence requirement is fulfilled by imports. The MII initiative helps in reducing this import dependence and achieve self sufficiency
The bulk of new projects for which acceptance of necessity has been obtained or will be sought are in the categories of “Make Indian” or “Buy and Make Indian. This includes the FICV(future infantry combat vehicle) project as well as FRCV(future ready combat vehicle) program to meet future requirements beyond 2027
Preference to ‘Buy Indian’ and ‘Buy and Make Indian’ over ‘Buy Global’
Simplification of procedure for ‘Buy and Make Indian’
Clear and unambiguous definition of indigenous content
Provision for maintenance TOT to Indian industry partners
Large no. of parts/components ,castings/forgings etc have been excluded from the purview of industrial licensing
Attempting to streamline defence acquisitions and give a big impetus to indigenization through the ‘Make in India’ initiative, the government has approved major changes to the DPP(defence procurement procedure) wherein a new category to promote domestic manufacturing, including government funding for R&D and recognition of the micro, small and medium enterprises in technology development
The DPP 2016 will have a new category—Indigenously Designed, Developed and Manufactured(IDDM) platforms which will be the priority route for procurements within this two sub categories have been created—one with mandatory 40% domestic content for a domestic design and the other mandating 60% local content if the design is not Indian. The domestic companies eligible under this will have majority Indian control and operated by Indian nationals
Some inroads have already been made.73% of procurement contracts have been signed with Indian companies. In the last one year this has risen to 87%.In terms of value 55% of our modernization budget has been spent on the Indian industry