Chance for reforms: 29% central employees to retire in 10 years

One of the chief problems in reforming India’s bureaucracy is that it is a powerful pressure group, which does not like to see a drop in its influence or a drop in its numbers. Now, a rare opportunity presents itself.

Of 3.3 million civilian central-government employees at the beginning of April 1, 2014, nearly one million (around 29%) are in the age group of 50-60 years, according to data released by the 7th Pay Commission recently.

“This is a ready pointer to the number of retirements that would take place in the next ten years,” said the report, running into nearly 900 pages. “The Commission notes that losing experienced high-level personnel entails unquantifiable costs as new recruits will require training and on-the-job skills. At the same time it presents ministries/departments the opportunity to align their personnel requirement in line with their current and future challenges.”

That observation is in line with a frequently mentioned need for administrative reform, which could include bringing in professionals from outside government, introducing performance-linked salaries and paying higher salaries to fewer employees.

“Successive governments have been guilty of turning a blind eye to administrative reform without which economic reform will not have its desired effect,” former cabinet secretary KM Chandrasekhar wrote in a column in The Economic Times. “The greatest obstacle to ease of doing business is administrative incapacity and, to this, governments traditionally pay no heed. It is time we brought administrative reform to the top of the governmental agenda and create systems that ensure efficiency and accountability.”

IndiaSpend’s analysis of the staffing of government departments and numbers of those facing retirement reveals the opportunities that exist in each.

The Pay Commission decides salaries and incentives for central-government employees. The Commission, which is constituted once in every 10 years, is also considered to be the base to decide salaries for state government employees.

“A central-government employee is defined as all persons in the civil services of the Central Government or holding civil posts under that government and paid salaries out of the Consolidated Fund of India. This, however, does not include such persons appointed to serve Parliament or the Union Judiciary,” the report said.

Read more athttp://www.business-standard.com/article/specials/chance-for-reforms-29-central-employees-to-retire-in-10-years-115112600501_1.html

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