Chief Secretary of the state JP Dange has cracked the whip on his subordinates at the state secretariat.
He has told them to toe the line when it comes to attending meetings chaired by Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, maintaining cabinet meeting protocol and implementing decisions taken in the cabinet.
In a strongly worded Government Resolution (GR) issued on Thursday that addresses bureaucrats like errant schoolchildren, Dange has said despite written notices circulated across departments by his office, many departmental secretaries are not following them.
Dange’s first grouse is against secretaries who get other departmental officials with them to attend cabinet meetings. From now on secretaries can only bring other departmental officials with them as an exception if such an official is required to make a presentation for instance.
This can only be done after taking prior permission from the chief secretary. The GR warns secretaries of disciplinary action if this trend continues at the cabinet. Cabinet meetings are supposed to be confidential and generally only the department’s secretary is present when the decision on his department is being discussed by the cabinet ministers.
Dange has warned bureaucrats to collate cabinet meeting minutes and to send this report to his office within an hour after the meeting. The GR says: Despite follow up by the Chief Secretaries office, many departments send these minutes signed by deputy secretaries and these minutes are not recorded with due diligence.
Sources said Chief Minister Ashok Chavan was upset with the state administration over poor follow-up and implementation of decisions taken at the cabinet and other meetings chaired by him.
The GR has also warned secretaries to attend all meetings chaired by the Chief Minister Ashok Chavan. Many bureaucrats send their deputies to attend such meetings.
“If cabinet decisions are not being implemented, it is ultimately failure of the Chief Secretary not just departmental secretaries. It shows an overall poor administration,’’ said a senior official, on condition of anonymity.