NEW DELHI: Some administrative reforms are believed to be in the pipeline following the Modi regime’s move to allow lateral entry of private professionals into the top bureaucracy. Sources claimed that lowering of the upper age limit of candidates taking the IAS exams and removal of an optional paper in the Mains were among the proposed reforms. These recommendations were made by the Baswan Committee in 2016.
Officials suggested that given the government’s preference for youth in the bureaucracy, it would not be a surprise if the recommendations were accepted. This is not the first time private professionals will be recruited in government posts. “Nandan Nilekani was CEO of UIDAI, Raghuram Rajan was the chief of RBI. Some economic advisers are also from outside,” said an official.
Congress spokesperson P L Punia, a former bureaucrat, claimed lateral entry was aimed at facilitating the entry of people from the RSS, BJP and some industrial houses into the bureaucracy. CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury tweeted, “Why are time-tested UPSC and SSC being sought to be undermined? To fill IAS ranks with Sanghis and undermine reservation too in the BJP’s last few months in office.”The NITI Aayog Chief Executive Officer, Amitabh Kant, himself an IAS officer, welcomed the move, saying it was long overdue. “NITI’s experience with the lateral entry has been extremely good. They (candidates) bring in a vast number of fresh and vibrant ideas,” he tweeted.