Public Administration Mains 2017 : Model Question and
(Public Administration Paper I / Chapter: Accountability and Control)
(Current Based) Question
: Do you think there should be control to ensure the accountability ? (25
Model Answer :
In a contemporary polycentric model of governance several actors are vested
with powers to undertake public administration. However, this model requires
necessary checks and balances between the different actors to ensure mutual
accountability. L D White has stated that Power in a democratic society requires
control and higher degree of power needs equal amount of control.
In the case of Indian Public Administration, there must be accountability to
the different actors and stakeholders- Parliament/Legislature, Judiciary,
Executive ,Customers and the Media. Each of these actors employs necessary
statutory and regulatory tools to exercise control over the Administrative
machinery and hold them accountable.
1) Legislative exercises control through different measures like question
hour, zero hour, adjournment motion, parliamentary committees, budget, public
accounts committees and no-confidence motion. In addition the legislature has
created statutory bodies to exercise independent control over the Administration
e.g. Comptroller and Auditor General, Central Vigilance Commission with the
Central Bureau of Investigation.
2) Executive exercises control through appointments, budget, rules and codes
3) Judiciary exercises control over the administration by upholding the Rule
of Law (A.V Dicey). Judicial Review and Judicial activism in the wake of the
national emergency have been measures taken by the Judiciary to hold the
administration accountable to the Rule of Law. The Constitution endows the
Supreme Court under Article 32 and High Court under Article 226 to issue writs
of habeas corpus, mandamus, certiorari, quo warranto and prohibition.
4) Media has always played a critical role in mobilizing public opinion and
serves as a critical informer of the inadequacies of the administration.
5) Customers have been endowed with the power of information post 2005. In
earlier times the Administration operated under the Officials Secrets Act, 1923.
However with the right to Information Act, the ordinary citizen is empowered to
know the functioning of the administration and can hold it accountable through
suitable grievance redressal mechanisms. The Lokpal must also be
institutionalized in the same spirit of exercising control and ensuring
accountability of the administration.
6) Accountability to God and your own conscience, even though a very personal
value system, is being encouraged by the Department of Personnel Training by
facilitating a distance learning programme on Values in Administration. (DoPT &
UNDP Project) (Total Words- 371)
(Linkages : Control and Accountability, Legislative Control and
Accountability, Executive Control and Accountability, Judicial Control and
Accountability, Media, Customers, Own Conscience and Accountability)