Top Bureaucrat: E Sreedharan - Magic is possible.
E Sreedharan - the man behind Delhi Metro - and more, could have been just another bureaucrat wiling away his time in corridors of power, wasting away public funds, and counting retirement funds.
But that was not to be. He demonstrated what a bureaucrat can achieve - if he wants to.
What exactly did he achieve - some examples:
- Delhi Metro project was finished in-time, top quality, within budget. This is a simple unheard of statistic in govt. run large scale project says it all.
- Took up building the Konkan Railway - that reduced Mumbai-Kochi distance by one-third. This was a challenging assignment - and one of its only kinds done since Britishers last laid down large scale railway tracks. And did this one successfully too - reducing travel time from Mumbai to Mangalore - from 41 hrs to just 15.
This technocrat was conferred with France's highest decoration Knight of the Legion of Honour
But, the usual story of Red Tapism, sleeping fellow bureaucrats, and unaccountable Politicians - haven't kept away from him. They hound him too - like here recently.
Nevertheless, this is a good example of what bureaucrats can achieve. Imagine - if all bureaucrats set out to work like him - we would have India Transformed very quickly. If India is largely poor - it is because the men who have been entrusted with funds, authority and manpower - to do their jobs - have failed to do it. There is no other reason.
Having esoteric NGOs, common man dharna's and writing letters of protest for every uncovered garbage dump - is not a practical way to achieve fast track progress. Put the right man at the right job - and get out of his way. And see the results. And if you don't see - you don't have the right man for the job - work towards achieving that.