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Updated: January 17, 2014 15:35 IST

Bureaucrats not granting clearances due to CAG, CVC fear: Manmohan

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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi at the AICC meeting in New Delhi on Friday. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt
The Hindu
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi at the AICC meeting in New Delhi on Friday. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt

Facing accusations of policy paralysis, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday admitted that growth rate had slowed down because clearances were not granted to infrastructure projects for the fear of CAG and CVC.

He asked the people to judge the record of his government while closely scrutinising that of opposition governments.

Addressing the AICC session in New Delhi, he rued that his government was not getting the “credit it deserves” even though the country has seen the average growth of 7.9 per cent over the last nine years despite two bouts of global recession.

With the upcoming Lok Sabha polls apparently in his mind, Dr, Singh said the people should compare his government’s performance while “closely scrutinising” the record and claims of others, particularly in the context of inclusiveness, an apparent reference to BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.

The Prime Minister said that the recent election results were disappointing, but stressed there was no reason for despair as the party could still win the Lok Sabha polls with an effective strategy under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi.

“We agree that there are certain domestic reasons responsible for the slowdown in our growth rate. Infrastructure projects do not get expeditious clearances. Bureaucrats are hesitant to take decisions fearing that CVC and CAG will raise questions over their decisions,” he said.

He was apparently referring to the questions raised by CAG over various decisions including in coal blocks allocation and 2G spectrum.

Dr. Singh asserted that his government was taking steps to remove such “obstacles” as he cited that the projects worth Rs. 5 lakh crore had been cleared by the Cabinet. “It will take some time for our efforts to bear fruit.”

Talking about efforts to deal with corruption, he said these issues are being dealt with as per law, although his government has followed the earlier policies in the allocation of coal blocks and 2G spectrum.

“Now we have changed the system completely. Now the allocation of 2G spectrum and coal blocks is being done only through auction. In future, there is no scope of corruption in these areas,” he said.

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Public Land Records should be placed under one roof for any type of
clearance. Some Models should be adopted for processing the approval
Unless some kind of Enterprise System is developed, Officials needn't
delay anything, the process itself will get delayed. It is the
opportunity for re-process engineering, with the aid of automation.

from:  Krishna
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 18:07 IST

I am crestfallen that an academic and practitioner of Dr.Manmohan Singh's caliber is
whimpering this way. The penultimate sentence reveals it all. Worse still, on 2G &
coal, the government has accepted CAG's criticisms. and elsewhere too. Only the
yesterday, the Hindu exposes a 'fearless' bureaucrat and allegation of a million dollar

from:  soundararajan.srinivasa
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 18:05 IST

It is astonishing that the Prime Minister of the country is indirectly
blaming the CAG and the CVC for slow economic growth. Surprising to hear
the PM saying this when his government is reeling under charges of large
scale corruption.

from:  K.Vijayakumar
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:55 IST

The whole edifice of civil services has been destroyed by people who have ruled us for better part of 60 years. Civil servants has been reduced to politicians servants. Dr Singh should refrain from making such statements else the Indians will lose whatever regards they have for him after his years of non performing government.

from:  sharma
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:54 IST

It is simply because the politicians are conveniently escaping from
any accountability aspect as they are above law or immune to law,
whereas the gullible bureaucrats are only being caught in the web of
law and sentenced with all sorts of punishments. In the case
Jaganmohan Reddy of Andhra Pradesh we are witnessing the way in which
the bureaucrats are being victimised, jailed, charge sheeted by CBI
for what all the decisions taken by the State Cabinet, which comprises
of only elected representatives but not bureaucrats. The only sin they
are doing is implementing the instructions of the Cabinet decisions.
Unfortunately, the people who have taken the decisions are let
scotfree and the people who are implementing the decisions are facing
the trials.

from:  T Rajeswar Rao
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:53 IST

Horrible. Prime minister talking like this. Shame for the corrupt government to take shelter
Blaming CAG and courts.

from:  Kannan
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:41 IST

please read it as 'INCOMPETENT' bureaucrats. There is a clear case of PIL against such a statement undermining country's growth and making India weak. Bureaucrats not granting clearances out of so-called fear is a anti-national act. We are being punished for questioning the corrupt practices. Being the head of the government Mr Singh's foremost duty is to bring confidence in the government servants to act without fear.

from:  prasbad
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:35 IST

The projects are cleared not only because of bureaucracy but also with the Green nod
attached with the infra. projects.

from:  Tushar
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:30 IST

What is the need of fear if everything is done correctly as per the
policies and guidelines. This kind of statement is not expected from a
person of a caliber of PM.
He must focus on reducing the levels of approvals and streamline the
the way file moves in government offices.
This is a ridiculous statement. Don't we have south Asian countries
like Singapore etc , Scandinavian countries and western countries
which are known for making fast clearances. Are these countries not
having any CVC or CAG like institutions?

from:  Manjesh Porwal
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 17:04 IST

"Bureaucrats are hesitant to take decisions fearing that CVC and CAG
will raise questions over their decisions,”

The government doesn't work hard enough and honestly enough to make
their case for their policy decisions and he takes potshots at two
institutions (well, one more than the other) which have been appreciated
by the people for their role in ensuring accountability to the detriment
of the government. Bravo!

from:  Aritra Gupta
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:59 IST

Let us understand in the first place why CAG and CVC are behaving in
this manner? Isn't it because of the scams that you were responsible for
Mr. PM? Secondly, they are only doing their duty. This PM is really a
wolf in sheep skin

from:  Ravi
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:56 IST

Puppet Singh must be jailed for his deliberate Criminal Negligence.In their greed for 'Kursi' both Sonia and her Puppet closed their eyes to a lot of scams.There was also power vacuum and Dalaalis had a field day robbing India.

If DMK's puppet Raja be jailed why not Sonia's Puppet Singh be sent to jail for the 2G scam and Coal scams.

from:  KondaRam
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:55 IST

Whatever said by prime minister is absolutely true. It is not because of corruption that India is losing global investments but due to the hype created by media and some government institutions. Integration of northern electricity grid with southern grid will help congress upto some extent in coming elections.

from:  viswa
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:54 IST

Suddenly leaders of Congress are finding ways to blame for their inefficiency and escape for their failure to govern - it is as simple as that - sorry -

from:  G Balu
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:53 IST

It is tragic that this man had been ecsatstic when he introduced his liberalization programme by bribing JMM in parliament.Now at the fag end of his failure of the whole process of liberalization which has only wasted scarce resources by bringing people's liabilities like paying old system of 2 months telephone bills to even advanced payment by tweaking economic scenario to benefit people like Reliance,he is repenting for these!

from:  atis
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:45 IST

This action was already there these people change the action to
correpted way and they are saying now every thing got changed and there
wont be correption in future. LOL again they are making people fool

from:  srini
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:42 IST

If there is hurdle for development of the country a consensus should be
reached in this regard and the fear should be replaced by bold actions
by the bureaucrats.

from:  A Narasimha Raghavan
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:41 IST

Dr.Singh is talking now-a-days. What a surprise? No use of giving clarifications now. What were you doing so long? As much as a learned person like you is desired for a PM post, he should be equally capable of taking strong decisions without being just a shadow. Unfortunately you failed there miserably. Its too late now Dr. Singh!

from:  padmaja
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:40 IST

A person appeared before the judge facing charge of murdering his parents.
His plea 'pardon me, I am an orphan'.

from:  Ravi
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:40 IST

Remind Dr.Manmohan Singh that the CAG is a watch-dog body. It barks and
will not hound.The constitution-framers thought it expedient to keep the
body in tact , that has colonial origins, in free india because of the
role it plays.

from:  manoharan
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:39 IST

Oh! what a surprise. Suddenly the Congress has waken upto the reality
that the people of this country are fed up with incompetent corrupt rule
of UPA and yearning for a change. The party which only cared for Big
Corporates have suddenly realised that without masses they are nobody.
But the realization has come a bit too late for correction.

from:  Sreedharan K N
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:20 IST

"Bureaucrats are hesitant to take decisions fearing that CVC and CAG
will raise questions over their decisions”(PM) -- Assuming CAG and CVC
act in the national interest and prevent national plunder and
corruption, why should ANYONE, who has not or does not intend to do
any wrong, fear these institutions vital to upholding the laws of the

"In future, there is no scope of corruption in these [coal blocks and
2G spectrum allocation] areas” – is this a belated admission of
national plunder? How come an internationally acclaimed economist was
not aware of the certain loss to the national exchequer in the absence
of an open auction, and is he now shutting the stable door after the
horse has bolted? How can the loss be recovered now and restitution
made to the 67% of Indians who need govt subsidy for to feed

from:  D Mahapatra
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 16:03 IST

What a great joke from this silent prime minister. If a bureaucrat is
clean he need not have fear for any one excepting his conciousness.They
are afraid because they are forced to do unethical things.

from:  R Raman
Posted on: Jan 17, 2014 at 15:48 IST
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