Essay No. 179:
An Ideal Bureaucrat: At the outset, it is necessary to define a bureaucrat. A bureaucrat is a part of the system of governance to run the administrative affairs of a department efficiently. He is responsible only to his department’s chief. Bureaucrats in the higher echelon are the secretaries, additional secretaries, while in the lower echelon are included deputy secretaries, assistant secretaries, section officers, etc. it is the reference to the system of government existing in the center and the provinces in Pakistan.
A bureaucrat is supposed to possess certain traits to be called an ideal one. The characteristics are short listened here as under. He must possess a high level of perception to discern about the nature of problems referred to his department for solution. He must be quick of understanding to reach the depth of problems. Problems are invariably of complex nature, which need on in-depth analysis.
Files coming to the secretary for final disposal contain analysis of the issues involved and in case any relevant point is missed which as a bearing on the issue at hand must be pointed out by him to strike at the realistic decision making.
He must be thoroughly conversant with the rules and regulations in vogue in the department to decide the cases referred to him for disposal. He should be capable of interpreting rules and regulations to arrive at correct decisions.
An ideal bureaucrat must under all circumstances uphold the rule of law and norms of justice. He should least be influenced by considerations of favoritism. If any external pressure in exerted on him, he should have the guts to withstand it in the interest of merit. Our society is subject to a lot of pressures emanating from politicians-cum-rulers to accommodate their ingenuine wishes.
The bureaucrat should resist pressures as far as possible not to allow the creation of an unhealthy precedent to be repeated overtime. However, if the decision flows form the top, then he should implement it as his job is to implement the direction of the authority.
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An ideal bureaucrat must be a man of impeccable character and integrity. He should be above immoral influences like corruption. Bribery, favoritism, etc. to establish his credentials of uprightness. He should equally keep a vigilant eye on his subordinates to prevent malpractices form being followed in the department. Some officials are crafty to indulge in malpractices to fill in their coffers with illegal money. His vigilant behavior can go a long way in keeping forces of corruption under control.
The ideal bureaucrat ensures the quick disposal of files that come to him on daily basis. He does not unnecessarily egg over the files. He is sharp in the disposal of cases. Disposal of files ongoing basis helps promote efficiency in the department. He must ensure his subordinates not to cause any delay in putting up the cases timely. If any instance of delayed action is detected, he should pull the concerned officials by their boot traps to avoid the recurrence of delay infuture.
An ideal bureaucrat is thought to be a hard task master. However, he should have soft feelings for his subordinates to help them in the resolution of their problems. He should look after the welfare of his subordinates as far as possible. If he wins over his subordinates, he secures their co-operation for the smooth working of the department. The bureaucrat must have a high moral stature. He should be like a sheltering tree to provide protection to his subordinates in the time of difficulty.
The bureaucrat must be punctual himself and should ask his subordinates to observe strict punctuality. The latecomers need to be pulled up rather harshly. Through his personal behavior, he should make his subordinates realize the importance of time. He must prove by his action that time is a valuable investment which is no way be allowed to go waste.