Saturday, 24 May 2014

Narendra Modi and Ramamritham

This blog steers clear of political issues (or at least tries to), and therefore it would not be appropriate to comment for or against the incoming government in India. However this blogger is a world leading authority on Ramamritham and therefore considers it fair to warn the incoming Prime Minister on the tactics and mechanism of dealing with this specimen.

The incoming Prime Minister of India is reputed to favour high quality bureaucrats, give them political cover and a free hand and then hold them accountable for delivery. That is classic good management,  but he has thus far only dealt with the admirable Gujjubhai Shah. The situation is far more nuanced when it comes to Ramamritham, especially the variety that is found in the Central government.

Firstly the Ramamritham in the Centre has, for the last five years, forgotten what it means to take a decision. Terrified by sundry agencies like the Auditor General, the CBI, the Press, etc, he has not taken a single decision in the last 3 years. To get him to change will be difficult.

Secondly, Ramamritham has found unimaginable joy in terrorism. In the past  he revelled only in saying No. Now he has discovered the joy of positively going after everybody. The incoming Prime Minister has himself referred to the tax terrorism he has unleashed. Once a terrorist has tasted blood, it is difficult to wean him away from this.

Thirdly the number of Ramamrithams has exploded. Because we have had gargantuan ministries, Ramamritham has been delightfully cloning himself. And he will defend his turf like a cornered animal.  I believe the incoming Prime Minister wants to rationalise and reduce the number of ministries. That will be tough to do.

Fourthly the Prime Minister has reportedly asked for presentations from every Ramamritham in town. This is downright dangerous. Each character will spin yarns so convoluted that even the most intelligent of men will be ensnared in them. He will convince any listener that Section, 5 subsection 7.3 (iv) of an obscure Act is the most important life and death situation facing the country. He is capable of fantastic gobbledygook.

Fifthly, he will try his best to house train you in as quick a time as possible. Look at what happened to the savvy, experienced Pranab Mukherjee. It was Ramamritham who had brainwashed him into unleashing tax terrorism.  Your first sign that he is trying to get you house trained will be in giving you 24 forms to sign because some formality of your becoming a Prime Minister has to be completed.

Therefore, my dear Prime Minister, you have only a very short window of time to act. First, summarily sack half the Ramamrithams. Abolish , in the stroke of a pen, wholesale departments - like Dept of Youth Affairs, Hindi Implementation, etc etc. Don't merge them - the only way to treat gangrene is to amputate.

Secondly terrorise Ramamritham. Tell him that if he terrorises anybody, you will emasculate him and transfer him as special ambassador to Bophuthatswana. The only fear Ramamritham has is to be removed from the corridors of power.

Thirdly do not ask Ramamritham about anything. Just tell him. Better still order him. And threaten him with  dire consequences as suggested above. Tell him that you will defend him against the CBI, the Press, the CAG, etc, but if one citizen complains against him, you will roast him alive.

Finally hold him accountable. He is the slipperiest eel on earth and has spent a lifetime avoiding any responsibility. Tell him if he screws up even the tiniest objective, you will withdraw his pension, force him to accept a Somalian as his son in law and get the US government to cancel his US visa so that he can't go see his grand children. The pettier his action, that more rigorous the retribution.

It has often been said that the recent election saw a triumph of hope, of aspirations, etc etc. I heartily agree. For me, it is not a hope that the GDP will grow, or everybody will become richer, or we will be more powerful on the world stage. All that will happen in spite of the government. The biggest hope for me is that you will castrate Ramamritham. If you do that, I am prepared to vote for you again and again, even if you have not succeeded in doing anything else.

PS: For newcomers to the blog, let me explain this character called Ramamritham. He is a fictional petty, narrow minded, obstructionist, pedantic, useless government official. He is purely fictional and any resemblance to anybody dead or alive is purely accidental.

PPS : This blogger has just finished the first draft of his tax return and you can perhaps understand the trigger for this rant.


The Million Miler said...

Boss, Bophutswana! Hats off to you, there are possibly very few people who remember that place. (Prof Shriram I'm sure!)
Ramamurthams are hard to exterminate. They are like cockroaches!

Ramesh said...

@Kiwi - :). Yes hard to exterminate, but at least we can try to control the spread of the infestation.

Sriram Khé said...

Ah,, yes, reminds me of the episodes from "Yes, Minister" when the crafty bureaucrats time and again outfox the ministers ...
It will do India a great deal of good to get rid of a chunk of the bureaucracy. "Hindi implementation" is a department? Seriously? WTF!
(btw, what will be the Hindi equivalent of WTF!? hehe!)
"castrate Ramamritham" ... hmmm .... tell us how you really feel abut Ramamritham ;)

Anonymous said...

Awesome!!! they really need to be ground away into some nether-land from where they can never return!! They have tortured and terrorised every citizen for too many years and for the first time I feel they are on that side!!! I am loving it!!

Ramesh said...

@Sriram - A virulent form of Yes Minister; yes. Oh yes Hindi implementation is a serious business - they even have a website If you ask them to give the Hindi equivalent of WTF, they would be delighted that somebody is asking for their services :)

@Shy - Wow, a fellow hater. Fantastic. May our tribe increase and prosper :)

Deepa said...

Et tu Brutus! Ever since Mr. Modi has won, everyone has a demand. People have even asked him to clean the Ganges, which I thought was a very tall ask but you went ahead and wished for the moon! My heart goes out to the poor guy. I am just praying we don't end up with our very own Indian Obama.

Ramesh said...

@Deepa - Guilty as charged. But then , I just did my tax return - so yo should excuse my intense antipathy to Ramamritham :)

You are making a big point however - the ridiculous hype and expectations will even down God, let alone a mere mortal.

Sandhya Sriram said...

so, i can offer a cure to Mr.Modi,

of his small cabinet, he can have a Ramarathinam Minister - whose only job is to deal with Ramarathinams.

Ramesh, maybe you should apply :-)

you are truly amazing - I read this blog out to my father yesterday and now he is a fan of your blogs. immediately went and subsribed to your feeds. High time, you moved from Blogs to News Papers.

Shachi said...

Sandhya - was going to say exactly that....I vote for Ramesh to be the Ramamritham manager er minister :D!

There are so many expectations from Modi....but I agree, if he can stop the Ramamritham tribe from increasing and get them sorted out, other things will eventually fall in place!

Ramesh said...

@Shachi - Oh No. I am your friend. Why are you condemning me to the worst job on earth :):)

Ramesh said...

@Sandhya - Honoured to have your father as a reader. Please convey to him my deep respects.

Look at the mischief you are causing. Now, Shachi has joined you in recommending me for the scariest of jobs :):)

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