Crisis in State Administrative Services – UPSC GS2

What is the problem with the State administrative services?
  • State failure to recruit an adequate number of civil servants
  • Inadequate training
  • Not fairly managed
  • Unsatisfied performance
  • Dysfunctional machinery
Shortage of officers/required staff in various departments:
  • Manpower shortage is found in almost all the departments. For e.g. in fire department, staff employed is below the prescribed international strength.
  • Same thing is with nurses and doctors. Over 20 states have a doctor to population ratio below the WHO norm of 1:1,000.
  • On average, the state police force is 24% under their sanctioned strength.
  • The condition is same with the best-governed states of India. Like Karnataka, which has conducted only 3 rounds of recruitment into the Karnataka Administrative Exam for over a decade. In which one round was stayed by High Court due to irregularities, another one was notified in 2015 conducted in 2017 and the recruitment remained incomplete.
  • A similar shortage has been experienced in almost all the departments like teachers, tehsildars, engineers etc.
What is the reason for the crisis in State administrative services?
  • In India, government jobs have become the spoils of power, to be distributed along the caste and regional lines, mostly to help politicians win elections.
  • When this political reality meet the government recruitment rules, things got stuck.
  • The deeper reason for state failure to nurture competent and professional civil services is the political economy.
How to improve State administrative services?
  • The best solution will be adopting the same examination for union and State Public Services.
  • States can also adopt the similar criterion of UPSC examination ranks for their state-specific tests.
  • This will help to reduce the status disparities between the centre and states and can also raise the standards of state officers.