In this connection reference may be made to the book ‘Nice Guys Finish Second’ written by B. K. Nehru, former I.C.S. Officer and former Governor of several States. On page 556 of this book B. K. Nehru writes :
“I also studied the organization of the Home Civil Service (in England) and how it was that in spite of a vigorous democracy the civil service had retained its independence in that it was guided by the rules and the law and not by the whims and wishes of transient ministers.
The answer was simple. All the three powers which are exercised by the minister in India to bend the civil servant to his will, namely, appointments, transfers and suspensions, are not exercisable by them at all in the United Kingdom. They are exercised by a very small group of Senior Secretaries presided over by the Secretary of the Civil Service Department who reports to the Prime Minister direct. It is they who appoint people, transfer them and punish them, not the ministers.
The Prime Minister of course, approves their proposals, but when I asked the Head of the Civil Service Department what would happen if the Prime Minister refused to sign, he was shocked out of his wits. He said, “But that cannot happen.” Such is the power of the conventions of the British Constitution, which, if broken, would lead to a furore in Parliament.”
Contrast this with the situation in India, where healthy conventions were never allowed by our politicians to develop.
Thus, in the Second Report of the National Police Commission, 1979 it was stated :
” Pressure on the police takes a variety of forms, ranging from a promise of career advancement and preferential treatment in service matters if the demand of the politician is yielded to, and a threat of drastic penal action and disfavored treatment in service matters if the pressure is resisted. While it is not possible to punish a police officer with a statutory punishment under the Discipline and Appeal Rules, without adequate grounds and following a prescribed procedure, it is very easy to subject him to administrative action by way of transfer or suspension on the basis of an alleged complaint taken up for inquiry. While suspension acts as a great humiliating factor, a transfer acts as a severe economic blow and disruption of the police officer’s family, children’s education, etc. The threat of transfer/suspension is the most potent weapon in the hands of the politician to bend down the police to his will ”
It was also stated therein :
” Extraneous sources, especially the political, encourages the police personnel to believe that career advancement does not at all depend on the merits of their professional performance, but can be secured by currying favour with politicians who count. Politicking and hobnobbing with functionaries outside the police system appear very worthwhile in the estimate of an average police officer. Deliberate and sustained cultivation of a few individuals on the political plane takes up all the time of a number of police personnel to the detriment of the performance of their normal professional jobs ”.
In his book Comparative Government, Professor Samuel Finer, writes:
“Two American political scientists (Professors Almond and Verba) made a survey of what they called ‘the civic culture’ in five countries. These were USA, Britain, Germany, Italy and Mexico. Answering the query (in the opinion poll they held), ‘which aspect of national life do you take most pride in?’, 2.5% Italians named their governmental arrangements, and only 4% of the Germans.
In Britain, however, 33% named their governmental arrangements. Furthermore, four-fifths of the respondents believed that the civil servants would treat them fairly, and no less than nine-tenth believed that the police would.
By international standards these proportions are very high indeed, and they express what has been asserted: that on the whole, the British esteem their political arrangements, and have confidence in them.”
In India, on the other hand, the public has a low esteem of the police, much of which is regarded as corrupt and/or incompetent, and blindly obedient to whatever order, however illegal or improper it may be, of their political superiors