In the eighth year of power, is Prime Minister Narendra Modi fearing any danger from the bureaucracy? The question was raised by a new government decree. The decree, issued to retired government officials concerned with the country’s sovereignty, security or integrity, states that no one can write or express his or her experience or opinion without the permission of the authorities. Otherwise their retirement pension will be uncertain. The decree was issued on Monday night in a notification issued by the Union Ministry of Personnel and Training under the Prime Minister.
Under this directive, the intelligence and security forces, the retired government bureaucrats associated with the national security, solidarity and sovereignty of the country are directly affected. Those who were also involved in scientific and economic interests and strategic matters are also falling under this directive. The bureaucracy thinks that the government can increase the scope of this guideline as it wishes. As a result, the government will be able to bring the entire bureaucracy under the purview of this notification by explaining the security, independence and interests of the country. Political circles feel that the government has paved the way for all bureaucrats to shut their mouths by linking the issue of non-receipt of pension along with jail-fine. As a result, from now on, no retired government official will be able to open his mouth on almost any subject without government permission.
The directive has become even more relevant in the wake of the central government’s ‘fight’ with the recently retired West Bengal Chief Secretary Alapan Banerjee. The letter and new instructions to ‘showcase’ the conversation were issued on the same day.
An official of the Constitutional Conduct Group, an organization of former anti-government bureaucrats, told Prothom Alo on Wednesday, “We will formally state our views soon. However, it seems that the government is scared for various reasons. Evil is feared. That is why it wants to put pressure on the bureaucracy so that sensitive information is not published. The government is not criticized. The former bureaucrat said the government and the country are not synonymous. But the government thinks that its opposition is the name of opposition to the country.
Just before the directive was issued, the Supreme Court expressed dissatisfaction with the sedition. Expressing displeasure over the way in which treason charges are being filed across the country for trivial reasons, the Supreme Court has said that the definition of treason needs to be redefined. Another cause of concern for the BJP, the ruling party at the Center, is nationwide dissatisfaction with the Kovid deal. What the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh is doing to deal with the anger, the way the arbitrary arrests have started, the ruling party MPs and MLAs are also angry.
Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls in February-March next year. It is believed that the ban was imposed on the former bureaucrat to suppress all dissatisfaction.
According to a top Congress leader, the government will issue more such bans in the coming days. The government does not want any official documents to be published before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. The leader’s idea is that the government wants to suppress two issues. One is the Rafale scandal, the other is the Chinese aggression in East Ladakh and the occupation of Indian land. He said the government did not want anything to be revealed before the vote, which would tarnish Modi’s image and make the formation of the government uncertain for the third time.