Sunday, November 14, 2010

the buck does not stop here!

It happened when we are all getting worked up about the CWG scam. It is happening again while we get our daily updates on the 2G spectrum scam. Each one of us, including the media, is wielding the stick only on the politicians. How is it that we have we all forgotten the role of the ubiquitous bureaucrat?

Does anything get done in this country or not get done, without the bureaucrat? Big or small, right or wrong, whenever a decision is to be made and whatever the decision to be taken, there is a bureaucrat lurking behind the scenes. Some give no advice, some proffer good advice and get snubbed or perhaps punished for that, some have only that advice to offer which the political master wishes to hear and reward; whatever the case, there is always a bureaucrat involved at every stage of decision-making in the Government.

For the politician, there is at least a semblance of accountability; once in a while, all too rarely perhaps, he is made to pay for his sins. The bureaucrat is another kettle of fish altogether. Almost always, he is a faceless entity, and governments may come and governments may go but he goes on forever. A minuscule number may have the CBI bursting the bubble of anonymity, but for the very large majority, this is a nightmare which never comes true.

So scams take place, one after the another, all the time, and sometimes these get exposed and sometimes not, but almost never does the bureaucrat's name crop up. How many of us know the names of the bureaucrats who aided and advised Kalmadi et al, or A Raja, for that matter ? Why are they not exposed to public scrutiny? No matter how obdurate the political boss, no matter how determined he is to have his way, if even a significant minority of bureaucrats refused to give in, would matters not stand differently? They don't, for a mutiplicity of reasons. Sadly enough, they don't get named either. So behind the Iron Curtain of anonymity, they march on, mostly disregarding national interest but safeguarding the political boss's interest!

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