J&K Babus do Not Care Much About Legislative sanctity, Says Report
Syed Junaid Hashmi (Early Times)
Jammu: Putting a question mark on sanctity of Legislative Assembly, committee on Government assurances has virtually condemned the State Bureaucracy for showing causal approach towards the fulfillment of commitments made on the floor of the House by Ministers of the ruling coalition.
The report for the year 2011-12 maintains that customary approach of State Government towards assurances given on the floor of house is awful and contrary to significance that Legislative Assembly holds for the legislators and even commoners. The report blatantly puts the entire blame on the IAS and KAS officers serving at various positions in the State Government.
It has stressed that none of the departments in State Government show enthusiasm towards addressing the concern of legislators on various issues for which the ministers might have assured action on the floor of the house. It further says that response of State Government to some very sensitive issues raised by public representatives has been unsatisfactory.
Report goes on to pronounce that Babus in civil secretariat overlook the communications of the Assembly Secretariat in respect of the Action Taken Reports (ATRs) and the process of implementation. Committee maintains that in utter disregard and disrespect towards the sanctity of the State Legislature, Government departments hardly takes care of the communications made by the Assembly Secretariat regarding the assurances given on the floor of the House by the Minister concerned.
Committee has termed the behaviour of various departments of the State Government as disregard towards the spirit of democratic institutions and the Parliamentary system. Making a mention of the statement 'Information is being collected and will be furnished during the current session', committee has said that this information is never furnished. Such is the callousness that even after the adjournment of the successive sessions, the information is neither collected nor provided.
The committee does take note of promises fulfilled by the State Government but says that when the same is done, it serves no purpose. Showing its disgust towards the reluctant attitude of Babus of the Civil Secretariat to share information with public representatives, committee says that seeking information about issues raised by erstwhile representatives of the people is sheer wastage of time and energy.
Committee has recommended that all such assurances which have lost their validity with the passage of time should be dropped. Committee has also requested the Assembly Secretariat to convey its displeasure to the Government for its casual approach towards the assurances given by it on the floor of the House. The committee has recommended that departmental representatives be directed to watch proceedings of the house and take note of the deliberations on various occasions.
It says that State Government is expected to respond within a stipulated period of time after the departmental representative is expected to have informed the State Government regarding the assurances made by it on the floor of the house. But it maintains that departmental representatives are always found waiting for the required communication from the Assembly Secretariat.
The record of the assurances clearly indicates that if they are not kept, they become obsolete with time and three years down the line, another committee would suggest that the same has lost validity with time and deserve to be dropped.