New Delhi: Addressing the Capacity Building Programme for senior officers of Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Service(JKAS), Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh today said that after the new constitutional arrangement came into existence and following the creation of Union Territory, several governance reforms have been introduced in Jammu & Kashmir, which was not so earlier.
In an interactive session with senior officers of Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Service (JKAS), who are currently undergoing a two-week Capacity Building Programme conducted by the National Centre for Good Governance (NCGG) under the Union Ministry of Personnel, Dr Jitendra Singh said, it is only last year that the Prevention of Corruption Act of India with its amended form was introduced in Jammu & Kashmir, whereas in the past the then State of Jammu & Kashmir had its own Anti-Graft Law.
The new Act, he said, will not only be more effective in curbing corruption but also provide several safeguards to honestly performing officers, like, for example, the bribe-giver will be equally guilty as the bribe-taker and permission for prosecution against an officer will have to be obtained at all levels, whereas in the past this privilege was only available to the officers at the level of Joint Secretary and above.
Similarly, the Minister said, the abolition of interview for recruitment based solely on written test was also introduced in J&K only recently.
The Minister regretted that for several years, the Cadre Review of the Civil Services officers was deferred or delayed by the then State Government of Jammu & Kashmir for reasons best known to them. However, he said, now that Jammu & Kashmir is a Union Territory and directly reporting to the Centre, Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT) has initiated the exercise to expeditiously conduct Cadre Review. This will also help in timely promotions as well as timely induction of UT officers into All India Services like the IAS.
Dr Jitendra Singh called upon the Jammu & Kashmir officers to adopt best practices in governance being followed at the Centre as well as several State Governments and replicate them in their respective areas of work. He said, with the kind of patronage and support being offered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Jammu & Kashmir, this is an opportunity for administrators and civil servants there to establish a new work culture aimed at obtaining the ultimate objective of ease of living for every citizen through the mantra of “Maximum Governance Minimum Government”.
The Minister said, the officers who have now undergone training must empower themselves with new ethos and practices. He said, the DoPT seeks to provide an officer friendly environment that will propel the administrative system to work for the people and ensure that grievances are handled in a prompt and efficient manner.
In pursuance of the decisions announced by, Dr Jitendra Singh in Kashmir Alamia during the Regional Conference on Replication of Good Governance Practices held on 1st and 2nd July 2021 at Srinagar organized by DAR&PG, Government of India and Government of Jammu &Kashmir, an MoU was signed between J&K Institute of Management, Public Administration & Rural Development (J&KIMPARD) to train 2000 Senior Officers including Jammu & Kashmir Administrative Service Officers on Public Policy & Good Governance.
The objective of the MoU is to establish, maintain and enhance academic and intellectual interaction through specific initiatives with a view to promote excellence in Capacity Building Programmes and Practices relating to Good Governance for the officers of Government of Jammu and Kashmir.
To operationalize MoU, the National Centre for Good Governance (NCGG) is conducting the Two-Week Capacity Building Programme for the Senior Officers of Jammu & Kashmir Administrative Service from 30th August 2021 to 10th September 2021.
Dr. Jitendra Singh congratulated the NCGG for the conduct of the Two-Week Capacity Building Programme for the Senior Officers of Jammu & Kashmir Administrative Service in such a short time. During the interaction, the officers conveyed that they were delighted and very enthusiastic in a way the program is conducted. They stated that this was for the first time in 25years of their career that they are being exposed to training outside Jammu and Kashmir. They thanked the Prime Minister for steering such bold initiatives and also expediting their long pending issues of promotion and cadre review.
Dr. Jitendra Singh also congratulated DARPG for taking up District Governance Index forward, which will pave new competitive spirits between the Districts. He said that the Prime Minister has desired for competition between District Magistrates for service delivery at the doorsteps of the citizens.