Government to induct 40 private sector experts

The government told Rajya Sabha that it had decided, in principle, to appoint outside domain experts to 40 positions at the deputy secretary and director levels in various Union ministries and departments.

In a written reply to a question in the upper House, minister of state for personnel Jitendra Singh said while the proposal had been cleared in principle, “no final decision has been taken in the matter”. In fact, asked if reservation was provided to officers recruited through lateral entry, he said this issue “does not arise” in view of the purpose of such lateral recruitment being infusing fresh talent and augmentation of manpower availability.

The proposal to appoint domain experts at the middle management level of central government is based on recommendations contained in Niti Aayog’s three-year action agenda and report of a group of secretaries submitted in February 2017 for lateral induction of personnel at the middle and senior management level in the government with the twin objectives of bringing in fresh talent as well as augmenting the availability of manpower.

Earlier, UPSC had recommended nine candidates for appointment as joint secretaries in the central government on lateral entry. Last June, the government had invited applications for 10 posts of joint secretaries in different ministries under its ‘lateral entry’ scheme in a bid to attract talent from public and private sectors.

The lateral entry mode, which relates to appointment of specialists from private sector in government organisations, is seen as an ambitious step of the Modi government to bring in fresh talent and ideas in the bureaucracy.

Government think-tank Niti Aayog had in a report highlighted that it was essential that specialists be inducted into the system through lateral entry on a fixed-term contract.

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