winds of change-part III-Domestic strategy-ch 32-1

I do not for a moment suggest that concepts or administrative techniques evolved during the colonial era were entirely without purpose. A solicitude for precedent is essential if public decisions are to be consistent and not arbitrary; a certain detachment in behaviour is necessary to keep up an image of impartiality; detailed examination and cross-consultation generates a wide consensus and thoroughness of treatment. Yet, the cumulative upshot of these attributes has been a certain inertia and lack of momentum. You will all agree that if devotion to precedent leads to paralysis in new situations, detachment becomes remoteness, examination turns into procrastination, cross-consultation brings about abdication of responsibility, and thoroughness results in debilitating delay, the objectives of administration, howsoever laudable, are to a large extent defeated. As such, the need for fresh thinking on promoting right attitudes among public per­sonnel is imperative, and I believe that in this task, the trainers of today and tomorrow have a very important role to play.

Whether we like it or not, there is today in the country a feeling of inadequacy so far as the public services are concerned. There exists also a widespread belief that the strength of the public personnel has grown at a pace unrelated to their functional utility. Be that as it may, the constructive approach now would be to so organize their training and education that each employee is lifted to a high pitch of functional utility and the community is compensated by a superior level of services rendered. This is the easiest way of making public servants acceptable.

Yet, in a country where large masses of people are at illiterate and semi-literate levels, mere functional efficiency cannot stir warmth. To the various virtues of civil servants enumerated by theorists from time to time, we have to add one more in our environment, that of humanity. We must realize that for a large number of our rural masses, a little glow of welcome in the eyes of the public official spells the difference between disappointment and exhilaration.