Transparency in Appointment in Institutions

With suitable examples, critically comment why timely and transparent appointments to key posts of important institutions is in the interest of smooth functioning of democracy. (200 Words)
A democracy works on a system of checks and balances to ensure that no organ of the state acts against the interests of the people. This system of checks and balances is instituted in the form of a few key institutions namely the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), the Judiciary, Central Information Commission (CIC) etc.
However, the recent past has shown that appointments of heads or members of these institutions have been delayed. While CIC was without a Chief Information Commissioner for about 10 months, similarly CVC was also functioning without a chief.
  1. The absence of a CIC for 10 months led to large number of problems in the implementation of the RTI Act., which is one of the pillars of good governance. The CIC bench is the only bench which hears petitions against sensitive departments like PMO, Atomic Department, Defense etc. It is also a referral bench for appeal against the decisions of other information commissioners. 10 months without a CIC has led to a backlog of nearly 38000 cases. It is estimated to take 15 years to clear this backlog at current pace of work, if no new petitions are filed. This shows the seriousness of the issue.\
  2. The CVC acts as a watchdog to ensure that government activities are free of the taint of corruption. Thus, it is sub optimal to have a vigilance commission without a Chief Vigilance Commissioner.
  3. The judiciary is widely acknowledged to be the protector of the rights of people. However, many High Courts are functioning at lower than sanctioned strengths despite the huge backlog of cases.
  4. 24 laboratories (Out of 37) of CSIR are working without Directors, Even the Director General of CSIR is not permanent rather ad hoc arrangements have been made. Same is the condition with other premier organizations like ISRO, DRDO, ICMR etc.
  5. Timely appointment to such positions indicates how much importance the incumbent govt. accords to the particular sphere. It is the barometer of Govt.’s Priorities
When institutions that safeguard the rights of the citizens against executive excesses are understaffed then that has an indelible impact on the rights of the common people. A government which professes to rule in the best interests of people cannot adhere to that philosophy if it leaves important institutions understaffed.

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