King and His Lieutenant
By Zubair Ahmed
Core values like Imandari, Wafadari and Izzat should be the guiding forces, reiterated our Lieutenant Governor in two very important gatherings last week.
Its almost six months, the new Administrator, A K Singh took charge of the
Island territory. A
refreshing change for the Islands after
prolonged six and half years, the territory gets a new Administrator with clear
vision and intentions.
He is trying his best to be a contrast to his predecessor and has been successful to an extent. AK Singh wants to stand against everything, in word and deed, that Bhopinder Singh was. He tried to connect with people and employed all tactics for that. His whirlwind tours were well attended and appreciated. Indeed, he changed the way people look towards an Administrator.
However, he is yet to understand the mechanics of civil administration, where mutual trust and faith are two important factors rather than regimentation and commands.
In Defence forces, everything is sensitive and discreet. However, in a civil governance setup, transparency and openness are paramount. No decision is sensitive to be kept a secret as far as public office is concerned.
After six months, although he has good grasp of the
Islands, its challenges and opportunities, it
seems he miserably failed in gauging the dynamics of civil administration. He
should have approached the Administration without a myopic vision. But, his
vision was blurred by his immediate advisor, the Chief Secretary. Today, he
looks the Administration through CS’s eyes, who engineers and manipulates his
views according to his whims and fancies. There are officials in the good book
as well as bad book of the LG and unfortunately, the books are photocopies of
the Chief Secretary. He failed to have an impartial and neutral assessment of
the officers. The Islands that the Chief
Secretary has created within the Administration remains disconnected without a
The lieutenant in question here enjoys blind trust of the Administrator. On the one hand, the Administrator harps on zero-tolerance against corruption, but his lieutenant openly supports and protects corrupt elements. The Administrator wants encroachment to be eliminated, whereas his lieutenant gives instructions to the DC to go slow on it. The Administrator talks positive and development, whereas his lieutenant thinks only negative and anti-development.
Either the Chief Secretary's memory power is very high, or he don't give a damn to all the announcements the Administrator makes at the functions. The announcements and decisions made by the Administrator at different functions are never followed up.