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PMO strengthens oversight of cabinet

LiveMint logoLiveMint 29-05-2014 A Staff Writer

New Delhi: The government on Thursday brought appointments of personal staff of ministers under the Appointments Coordination Committee headed by the Prime Minister in a move aimed at promoting transparency and reducing the scope of personal discretion.

The move marked a break from convention, where personal staff, including officers on special duty (OSD), were appointed at the discretion of the minister.

Coming immediately after the formation of government, it reaffirmed the dominance of the prime minister’s office (PMO).

The cabinet constituted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi signalled that the power in the government would once again vest with the PMO—especially after the PM included in his list of portfolios the all-encompassing “all important policy issues”.

In the run-up to government formation, it had been widely speculated that Modi would adopt the Gujarat model of governance, which attempted to minimize interaction with government departments by digitizing the process of governance.

Modi believes that this is the key to reducing the scope for graft. A statement issued by the PMO said Modi planned to use technology to promote good governance.

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