Consultant culture must end: Manish Sisodia

The Aam Aadmi Party government is opposed to hiring of consultants for giving advisory reports, said Revenue Minister Manish Sisodia who said some dubious consultants run “private shops” and he called the practice of spending lakhs of rupees on them as a dispensable legacy of the previous regime.

Sisodia, who also holds portfolios of public works department, education, urban development and land and building, said there was enough talent within the government officials and the need for hiring private persons for specialised tasks was undesirable.“We will consult our officials and seek suggestions from public and volunteers,” said Sisodia.

Sources hinted that the Arvind Kejriwal would honour the previous government’s commitments and contracts with the consultants but would review the need for giving them any extension. “Consultancy was being used as a front to give legitimacy to favours extended to some people,” said a government functionary.

Sisodia indicated that the government was keen to end the “consultant culture” in the government and save public money. The minister’s statement came at a time when employees working on contracts in government departments have started mounting pressure to regularise their services. On Thursday, delegations of contract employees from Delhi Transport Corporation and hospitals met several ministers in the Delhi Secretariat.

A Delhi government official said there were two types of contract employees working in various departments. “One category is of those who have been hired on contract directly by the government. The other, category is of those who are working for contractors to whom certain tasks have been outsourced,” said an official.

The workers engaged by a contractor – like security guards in some hospitals – would not benefit from the new government’s plan to regularise the services of ad hoc employees.

“Only those employees who have been hired directly by the government on a contract can benefit from any such move,” said an official. Any move to regularise the contract employees will have to be in accordance with the norms and the qualification for a particular post.

“The last time when the services of some contract doctors were regularised by the Delhi government, they were interviewed by a panel set up by the Union Public Service Commission,” said an official.

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