Law changed to appoint Misra principal secy to PM | Business Standard

Law changed to appoint Misra principal secy to PM | Business Standard

Online comments:

The view expressed by former finance secretary EAS Sarma in this
context which reads, “The independence of regulatory authorities is
pivotal to any economic reform strategy. That is the reason why
regulators are given a fairly high status but precluded from accepting
any post-retirement appointment from the government. This applies to all
regulatory authorities and Trai as well.” should be kept in view while
government takes a re-look at the law governing all such and similar
appointments. Unfortunately, there has been heavy dependence on
expediency in selection and terms of appointment to high level posts in
the past.

The ordinance in the present context is to ensure that the new
government does not ‘violate’ an existing legal provision, irrespective
of its rationale and the gesture should be seen only from that
perspective. If the opposition succeeds in preventing this appointment
citing ‘legalities’,just for the 'fun' of defeating an initiative of new
government, it need not embarrass anyone except Misra who may have to
quit from that post temporarily. Let us remember that the previous
government did not feel bad even when money bills had to be scraped
through by ‘buying’ support. Finding a substitute for Misra will not be

The controversy arising from this appointment should be a pointer for
Modi to be cautious while handling opposition, as oppositions in
legislatures in India, by and large, have no history of constructive
cooperation. Reforms should start from behaviour in both houses of
Parliament. More important, government should quickly evolve norms for
high level appointments across sectors including judiciary and ensure
longer terms at the top as also provide adequate incentives to the
incumbents not to use the appointments as stepping stones to more
lucrative positions.

 M G Warrier, Thiruvananthapuram


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