From now on, civil service trainees will have an additional role under the Modi sarkar’s “Nurture the Future” programme, which was started recently. Under the programme, civil service probationers of the 2019 batch will have to adopt adolescents and mentor them throughout their educational and professional lives.
The government has reportedly identified 425 children from 11 villages in Gujarat and associated them with the 425 officer trainees from 20 civil services, including IAS, IPS, IFS and others. The mentors and the mentees have been linked through their Aadhaar numbers to enable them to stay connected. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who launched the initiative, believes that providing mentorship to underprivileged children studying in class 10 or above will instil a sense of social responsibility in the babus.
Sources say that this “pilot” project will be expanded to other parts of the country and other government training academies to adopt. It’s hard to say whether this initiative will flourish or fade away, but it is a step in the right direction. Kudos to the sarkar on attempting this.
The price of dissent
Kannan Gopinathan, who quit the IAS to protest the lockdown in Jammu and Kashmir, has reportedly been served with a chargesheet by the ministry of home affairs. He had quit in August citing “the denial of freedom of expression to the people of Jammu and Kashmir”, a move that had stirred up a storm on social media platforms.
According to sources, Mr Gopinathan, who was the collector of Dadra and Nagar Haveli when he resigned, has been accused of insubordination. Interestingly, since Mr Gopinathan did not own a home and lived in a rented place, the chargesheet was emailed to him. The charges against him relate to his stint in Dadar and Nagar Haveli and include “failure to put up the file in time, not completing underground cabling project on time, not submitting tour report for relief work in Kerala, not applying for PM excellence award, and submitting the file directly to administrator.” He has also been accused of creating an adverse image of the government through his interactions with the media. Clearly, leaving the IAS can be as difficult for some people as joining it!