At a family gathering last week, I met my 16 years old cousin Manu, who knows that I am a Civil Services Aspirant. He was curious and asked why Civil Services when you already have a Government Job? What difference will it make? I indeed had a task in hand!
A Government job in India is any such employment wherein the Central or the State Government is the employer, directly or indirectly. It pays you a certain salary for carrying out the implementation of various social welfare programmes and policies of the Government. What makes these jobs attractive among the youth is the sense of job security, better work life balance and social authority& respect. The frequent news headlines of Post Graduates applying for Group D posts in various state Governments speaks volumes about the aura that a government job generates.
Though every Government job is inherently a civil service as you are serving the people, but Civil Services generally refer to those who are engaged in the civil administration such as as those employed as a part of Indian Administrative Services, Indian Police Services, IFoS, Indian Revenue Services and others like State Government jobs viz Tehsildar etc.The term Government job includes the all of the above, but is also used for other who are not directly engaged in civil administration like teachers in Government Schools, doctors in Government hospitals etc.
A civil servant has a greater sphere of responsibility, power and authority when compared to other government servants. For example, an IAS in a district administers the area under his/her control. Similarly, an IPS looks after the law and order in his/her region. But there are other numerous government servant who are facilitating the work of senior civil servant.As an aspiring civil servant, it is imperative for us to understand the importance of our fellow team members, other government servants.
In India, Civil Services Examination, conducted by Union Public Service Commission (U.P.S.C.) is deemed to be amongst the toughest examination, and rightly so, as it is an entrance gate to higher level management of the country. Similarly, various State Public Service Commissions conduct examination for selecting state public servants.
Civil Services and Government jobs have always been a dream job of young blood, who have an aim to contribute to society and make a positive impact in the well being of citizens. However, few join the service as they consider it as an avenue for less work and more pleasure. Such aspirants are always in for a rude shock. Gone are the days when the Government jobs appeared to be less taxing. With the advances of Information Technology, most of the file works in the administration are dealt through online portals, which keeps track of the file movements and enforces accountability on the officers. Similarly, while initiatives like biometric attendance have enhanced punctuality, laws like the Right to Information Act have increased transparency in government functioning. With more awareness among the masses about their rights, the government servants are always on their toes and can no longer afford to be seen as torpid. It is, therefore, to approach this field with a benign motive to serve the people.
A civil servant like other government employees is expected to be ethical and ensure uprightness in his/her conduct, even after office hours. If the democracy of a nation is to be robust, it must be fuelled with ethical and diligent government employees.
Explaining further, I told Manu that it is not that I am not content with a government job, but being a civil servant it will give me a greater platform for initiating changes in the society for public welfare. I cited the examples of famous civil servants like Mr. O.P. Chowdhary on how he transformed life of hundreds of school going children in Naxal hit area – Dantewada in Chhatisgarh. I told him to read about Mr. AjitDoval, Mr. U Sagayam, Mr. Armstrong Pame and see how their public welfare initiatives have made them so popular among masses. Each Government employee contributes to the progress of our nation, its just that civil servants have more resources at disposal and hence can contribute significantly.
Manu appeared to be convinced and I could sense a determination in his eyes. I guess I have sown, at least in part, the seeds of a future civil servant for our country.