Text Size:

Thank you dear subscribers, we are overwhelmed with your response.

Your Turn is a unique section from ThePrint featuring points of view from its subscribers. If you are a subscriber, have a point of view, please send it to us. If not, do subscribe here: https://theprint.in/subscribe/

The recent spate of extensions given to various top functionaries in key areas of bureaucracy exposes the government’s failure for succession planning and gives rise to over dependence on few bureaucrats to run the administrative machinery of the entire country.

The following are the extensions given in recent times to bureaucrats handling key portfolios in the government :

Sl.No. Department Position Name Extension

(In years)

1 Enforcement Directorate Director Mr. Sanjaykumar Mishra 2
2 CBI Director   Tenure of the director extended from the current 2 years to 5 years
3 RBI Governor Mr. Shaktikanta Das 3
4 RBI Dy. Governor Michael D Patra 1
5 National Security Advisor Mr. Ajit Doval 5
6 Secretariat Cabinet Secretary Mr. Rajiv Gauba 1
7 RAW Secretary Mr. S.K. Goel 1


Repeated extensions to the existing officers lead to the following serious repercussions among the bureaucracy:

  1. Frustration among the existing officers due to redundancy in the cadre.
  2. Demotivates the existing officers as they see no future growth.
  3. Over dependence on few officers develops a feeling of indispensability and arrogance  among them.
  4. Fresh ideas don’t flow and only “run of the mill stuff” ideas would emanate.
  5. An “Yes boss” culture will develop and officers will be only interested in pleasing their bosses without looking into the merits of the policies of the government.
  6. Vested interest may develop among the officers receiving extension.
  7. Many talented, efficient and more deserving officers may lose opportunities to be at the helm of affairs which would be an irreparable loss to the government.. 

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) mandated that a company’s Board must have a proper succession plan or policy in place. This is one of the most important steps to ensure that investors do not suffer due to sudden or unplanned exits of top leadership.

Succession planning ensures the stability, accountability and continuity of the organization by preparing for an eventual permanent change in leadership.

Succession planning is a part of the Business Continuity Plan (BCP) of every organization.It is also one of the Risk mitigating factors of people risk in any organization.

It is strange to observe that the same government which gives directions to all the corporates to have a succession plan in place for business continuity doesn’t think of the same in their own ministries and departments and continues to give extensions to the officers regularly ignoring the cardinal principle of Risk Management.

There’s an old saying that If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.Government should wake up to the reality and implement a succession plan in all its ministries in letter and spirit.

These pieces are being published as they have been received – they have not been edited/fact-checked by ThePrint.

Also read: Why Delhi govt schools need classrooms more than teachers trained in Finland