Civil servants’ nexus with Netas a matter of concern, say voters

Bansgaon (Uttar Pradesh), :  As is the government, so will be the civil servant; or vice versa.
Voters in Bansgaon – a reserved seat being held by the BJP since 2009 – openly talk about politico-bureaucrats nexus and how this has influenced and more specifically harmed the state.
IPS officer Kush Saurabh took voluntary retirement from service to contest from the Basgaon Lok Sabha seat on a Congress ticket. He was obliged but incidentally, his nomination was cancelled by the Election Commission.
According to local Congress workers here – it was rejected on the basis of ‘technical ground’ as Mr Saurabh reportedly did not submit some papers related to his use of government houses.
Now the battle is locked essentially between BJP’s sitting MP Kamlesh Paswan, who had defeated BSP candidate Sadal Prasad in 2014. Five years later in this year’s election as well, the BJP has fielded Mr Paswan while BSP nominee is again Sadal Prasad.
The voters in this segment do talk about hard core political issues like nationalism-jingoism unleashed by the BJP or the politics of caste management as seen in BSP-Samajwadi alliance.
“In distorted version of secularism as often debated, appeasing a particular minority community was something displayed openly. This provoked strong anti-Muslim politics and ultimately helped the BJP,” says Majeed Khan, a cloth merchant.
But he has not given up and also maintains the ‘secular tradition’ or ‘Ganga-Jamuna Tehzeeb’ in hope that eastern Uttar Pradesh would return in social life again.
“To hope is to give an effective direction to the future. And that commitment to the future has only made the ensuing election more important. So we have to be careful while exercising the franchise,” he says.
Several others in his shop and outside in the township also endorse Khan about the importance of May 19 polls. But at the same time people also discuss on how the line between government Babus or bureaucrats and politics has blurred in Uttar Pradesh and a number of retired officers are contesting the elections.
In fact, 30-year-old Ramesh Paswan says “The corruption and nepotism only get encouraged when proximity to leaders in power becomes the only criterion for career advancement and also juicy postings for the officials.”
In order to strengthen his argument, Ramesh Paswan, a sales executive, says a local NGO has prepared a list of former civil service officials who – allegedly used their positions and nexus with the Neta class – to give a push to their political career.
In this context, they point out to the retired officer Shyam Singh Yadav, who is now a BSP candidate from Jaunpur.
Tribhuvan Ram, a former Chief Engineer of the PWD Department, is a former BSP MLA and has been fielded as BSP candidate from the Machhlishahr Lok Sabha seat.

Obviously, locals discuss how former IAS officer PL Punia and IPS Satya Pal Singh have already had successful stints in politics. While Mr Puniya is a key Congress leader and a trusted aide of Rahul Gandhi, former Mumbai and Pune police commissioner is a BJP lawmaker and Union Minister.
Vijay Shankar Pandey, who served as Principal Secretary to BSP chief Mayawati during her term as Chief Minister between 2007 and 2012, is now contesting the Lok Sabha elections from the Faizabad Lok Sabha seat.
Retired IAS officer Ram Bahadur, considered close to Mayawati, is also contesting from Gonda constituency.
He was also posted in Gonda as District Magistrate earlier.
However, some say there is “nothing wrong” in former bureaucrats and police officials contesting elections.
“Their experience in administration have on several occasions helped the parties they joined,” remarked Nasim Ansari.
But according to some such ‘tagging’ often disturbs officers discharge their professional duties.
On this backdrop Nasim Ansari’s father – a retired banker says – “In fact, reports say during the last days of Akhilesh Yadav dispensation in 2017 said that as the prospect for incumbent Samajwadi Party looked not so bright; some officials were even reluctant to take key assignments for fear of being branded as pro-Samajwadi.


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