Skip to main content

Gujarat govt's vibrant move: Graduates to get stipend more than State's class one babus!

By Rajiv Shah 

In order to showcase how much innovative it can be ahead of the Vibrant Gujarat world business summit (January 10-12),  the Gujarat government has come up a new criterion to value human resource development: It has decided to offer the state’s mere graduates with 60% score a stipend of more than what the state’s newly recruited class one officers – who reach the top spot in the bureaucratic ladder through tough competitive examinations and several layers of promotion – receive as salary! 
A recently-released 122 page government resolution (GR), which includes annexures, and whose copy is with Counterview, states, the stipend would be given to selected candidates for the Chief Minister's fellowship programme, which would be identified as the Sardar Patel Good Governance CM Fellowship. The GR claims, “The aim and objective of this scheme is to channelise youth-energy (aged 35 or less) in holistic development of state and the nation”.
The GR states, after “careful consideration”, the government decided that in all “20 fellows will be appointed at the end of the selection process in the fellowship programme”, though not ruling out recruiting even more, underlining, “The actual need will be determined over time.”
As for remuneration, it would be “a monthly stipend of Rs 1,00,000 + Rs 10,000 leave travel allowance (LTA)”, the GR reveals, adding, the entire coordination of the programme would be carried out by the government’s top institute which offers refresher courses to all categories of officials, the Sardar Patel Institute of Public Administration (SPIPA), and under the General Administration Department (GAD), responsible for giving final touch to appointment and transfer of all categories of state babus.
A government source confirmed, the Gujarat government take-home salary for a newly-recruited class one official is “around Rs 90,000-95,000 per month”, which includes the basic pay, the dearness allowance and other payments which she or he is supposed to receive every month. “The senior-most class one official gets take home salary of about Rs 1.75 lakh per month”, the source added.
According to the GR, SPIPA would invite “online applications following principle of equal access, open competition and transparent selection by advertisement in a newspaper of wide repute”, adding, the selection would be done following a scrutiny of the applications first by a Scrutiny and Shortlisting Committee (SSC), then by a Selection Committee (SC), and finally by a Special Selection Committee (SSC).
The first layer of the selection committee would do its job on the basis of “the personal statement from candidates of at least six times the available seats”. The personal statement would be “evaluated by an expert at the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A)”. This expert, it adds, would recommend a panel of at least three times of the number of seats.
While government officials from SPIPA and GAD would dominate in the each of the layers set up for the selection process, the final selection, GR states, would be the prerogative of the Special Selection Committee headed by additional chief secretary (ACS), GAD, who is one of the senior-most IAS bureaucrats of the Gujarat government, and consisting of other officials and a “nominated member either from IIM- A, Institute of Technology-Gandhinagar (IIT-G), or any other reputed institute.”
Says the GR, the process of selection would be based on not just on “personal statement” evaluated by the IIM-A expert (it would be given a 20% weightage). A far bigger weightage (40%) is to be given to “personal interview”.
However, the GR offers a loophole here, stating the rules may be relaxed; the evaluation may not necessarily involve an “outsider” from IIM-A or IIT-G or any other reputed institute. It underlines, “In certain exceptional cases and in the exigency of time and with full justification, selection can also be considered from a single source...”
To be recruited for one year and extendable for another year, the GR says, the continuation of the fellowship would be determined by mutual consent, and individual fellows would get a 10% increase in their stipend. Even here there is a loophole: It notes, whereas ever the Gujarat government is of the opinion that it is necessary or expedient to do so, there may be relaxation or modification in “any of the provisions...”
And what are these 20 (or more?) selected fellows are supposed to do? The appendix attached with the GR says, the fellows – to be attached with a government “mentor”, equipped with a personal laptop, and transport facilities in case of travel for project purpose – are supposed to “contribute to the enhancement of governance in the state of Gujarat by infusing innovative and effective approaches into policy-making and service delivery processes.”
To be selected for Chief Minister's fellowship programme, the aim is to channelise youth energy in holistic development of state and nation
Further, the selected boys and girls would “serve as a catalyst for transformation within government departments promoting a culture of innovation, efficiency and excellence”, GR says, underlining, the fellows would serve as “advisory or professional” capacity, “providing expert or strategic advice” on “management, policy or communication”.
Further, it adds, their services would include “feasibility studies, project management, engineering services, architectural services, finance accounting and taxation services, training and development, etc.” -- all of which would subject to strict “confidentiality laws and regulations applicable within the State of Gujarat.”
In fact, the fellows, according to the GR, are prohibited from “publishing a book or a compilation of articles or participate in TV/ radio broadcasts/social media or contribute an article or write a letter in any newspapers or periodical either in their own name or anonymously or pseudonymously in the name of any other person if such book, article, broadcast, or letter relates to subject matter assigned to them by the Government of Gujarat.”
While the minimum qualification for applying for the fellowship is graduation with 60% marks, and persons with higher qualifications, more experience and those from reputed institutes (IIT, IIM, Indian Institute of Science, All-India Institute of Medical Sciences, National Law University, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Pusa) may be “preferred”, when contacted, a top state official told Counterview, “The fellowship is nothing but another BJP move amidst many to favour and reward those are from saffron outfits.”
The fellows, the GR notes, would be required to study, analyse and offer project reports on subjects which include implementation of the midday meal scheme; nutrition and health of anganwadi kids; wasting, stunting and malnutrition among school going children; health and nutrition of pregnant women and lactating mothers and children up to months of age, especially in the tribal blocks. advantages of fortified food, reduction in under-nutrition and nutritional anemia among adolescent girls.
Then, the fellows are supposed to organise rapid surveys on enrollment of students in science and mathematics stream at secondary/ higher secondary level; recycling of municipal waste, liquid and solid waste management; promotion of natural farming; enhancing irrigation capacity and optimal utilization of Narmada water resources; and tourism promotion of heritage, wildlife, beaches and religious sites.

Comments

TRENDING

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Don't agree on domestic subsidies, ensure food security at WTO meet: Farmer leaders

Counterview Desk  The Indian Coordination Committee of Farmers Movements (ICCFM), a top network of farmers’ organizations in India, in a letter to Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, has asked him to “safeguard food security and sovereignty, even as ensuring peasants' rights" at the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO MC 13), to take place from 26 to 29 February 2024 in Abu Dhabi.

Students, lawyers, professors detained in Delhi for demonstrating in support of farmers

By Our Representative  About 25 protestors, belonging to the civil rights network, Campaign Against State Repression (CASR), a coalition of over 40 organisations, were detained at Jantar Mantar for holding a demonstration in support of the farmers' stir on Friday. Those detained included students, lawyers and professors, including Prof Nandita Narain and Prof N Sachin. 

Sharp 61-85% fall in Tech startup funding in India's top 'business-friendly' States

By Rajiv Shah Funding in Tech startups in top business-friendly Indian states has witnessed a major fall, a data intelligence platform for private market research has said in a series of reports it has released this month. Analysing Tech startup data of Telangana, Maharashtra, Delhi NCR, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, Tracxn Technologies Ltd , the Bengaluru-based research firm, finds that except for Kerala, funding witnessed a fall of anywhere between 61% and 85%.

Solar energy funding dips 9% in 2023; 2024 'kicks off' with US$1 billion investment

By Lakshmitha Raj*  Solar energy tech companies have already secured slightly over US$1 billion in funding in 2024 (till Feb 7, 2024) after total funding into Solar Energy companies in India fell 9% to US$1.55B in 2023 from US$1.7B in 2022. A total of 39 $100M+ rounds have been closed till date, with Delhi leading the city-wise funding, followed by Gurugram and Mumbai.

Maize, bajra, jute, banana cultivation banned off West Bengal border: Plea to NHRC

Counterview Desk  West Bengal-based human rights defender Kirity Roy, who is secretary, Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Manch, and is national convenor of the Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity, in a representation to the chairman, National Human Rights Commission, second within few days, has bought to light one more case of trespassing and destruction of a fertile banana plantation by BSF personnel along the Indo-Bangladesh border, stating, despite a written complaint to the police has taken "no initiative".

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

India second best place to invest, next to UAE, yet there is 'lacks support' for IT services

By Sreevas Sahasranamam, Aileen Ionescu-Somers*  The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the best place in the world to start a new business, according to the latest annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) survey. The Arab nation is number one for the third year in a row thanks to a big push by the government into cutting-edge technology in its efforts to diversify away from oil.

Mahanadi delta: Aggressive construction in flood plains, reduced fish stock, pollution

By Sudhansu R Das  Frequent natural calamities, unemployment, low farmers’ income, increase in crime rate and lack of quality human resources to strike a balance between growth and environment etc. continue to haunt the state. The state should delve into the root causes of poverty, unemployment and natural calamities.