For almost 200 years District Collector enjoyed unchallenged omnipotence but with the creation of LSG, it creates a kind of a reporting relationship between District admin and LSG but in most states, there is no clarity w.r.t relation between DC and LSG.
Why is B'y against LSG
- It establishes control and accountability - which goes against the traditional relationship between DC and local body/people.
- Creates horizontal, lateral, diagonal social micro accountability of DC to Local Bodies
- Vested interest - Loss of patronage
- Shifting the balance of power - inverting the power pyramid - goes against the typical colonial regulatory mindset of treating citizens like subjects
- Not yet reconciled to the idea of LSG as the primary vehicle of development
- Fierce loss of power - In many states, DC is still an inspector of PRI's. Has the power to suspend PRI resolution
- Even the states support DC instead of LSG due to lack of political will to empower LSG
Should District collector exit from developmental scene ?
- DC does not have the skillset and mindset for development. Therefore separate regulation and development admin
- CEO of Zilla Parishad - Can look after development while DC can be restricted to the regulation of L&O
- Can't artificially segregate regulation and development. Both reinforce each other, share a complementary relationship, not practically possible
- DC as an area officer is strategically placed to coordinated and generate synergy among officers and staff belonging to different director/development. No other official is equipped to create consensus and to generate outcome as much of DC who can use his power (hard and soft) to bring about integrated development (ripple effect)
- DC can interact with both LSG and State - act as an interface and identify real needs rather than stated demands. e.g - LSG at times may be guilty of being too parochial and myopic rather than looking at the macro, big picture / long term due to lack of E3 - Exposure, Experience and Expertise. But DC can unlock, discover real neds during his field tours/inspection one to one interactions with people and LSG but he needs to become more of a friend philosopher and guide helping LSG to take a more holistic decision.
- DC in some cases has to play the role of staff officer instead of playing the traditional line role. But different districts in different states are at various stages of development or lack of development. Therefore there can't be a standardised model of development. It has to dynamically evolve, to suit the specific local needs taking into consideration, local conditions, resources and constraints. DC should align himself as per district needs. This requires attitudinal transformation
As observed by former PM - DC's role has not diminished, it has transformed into a more powerful role of coordinator, which he is well suited to play because of E3.
Even 2nd ARC while speaking of a district government has recommended that DCs role should not be diluted but re-aligned to include
- Land revenue
- L&O exercise
- elections (chief returning officers) - (Receive nomination, result announcement)
- Facilitating PPP & PPPP(Punchayat Public pvt Partnership)
- disaster management
- General Administration GAD
- public service delivery
- PURA - Provision of urban amenities in rural areas
- RTS - Right to Service
- E6 - Efficiency, Effectiveness, Economy, Experience, Expertise, Exposure
- VFM - Value for Money
- C3 - Choice, Convenience, Customisation
- Civil Supplies
Civil society Interface - NGO, Voluntary Organisation - need to engage with civil society - Practice Outreach - tap social capital. Use community strengths and voluntarism.
Facilitate entrepreneurs. Get feedback on policies schemes projects programmes, cultivate goodwill (esp in LMN areas). All these initiatives winning hearts and minds. - (admin help during crisis times will generate or create a +ve image of the state in the eyes of citizens).
National Civil Service Day Awards are given
- Gulshan Bambra - Balaghat District - LMN affected area. Imaginative use of MGNAREGA. Outreach to rural haats. Assembled a team of officials at one place. Provide Goods & Service in one place. On the spot grievance redressal.
- Krishan Kumar - Kanjam District Odisha - Disaster Management during Falin
- Vineel Krishna - Malkangiri Odisha - LMN pocket outreach. The goodwill ultimately released him from abduction by LMN.