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PM Modi to Secretaries: Take decisions without any fear
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday met the secretaries of all the government departments together and asked them to take decisions on their own without fear. It was reported that the PM asked the secretaries to approach him directly to resolve issues and accelerate decision-making, while assuring them his full support.

PM Narendra Modi also “encouraged the officers to take decisions and assured them that he would stand by them,” an official statement that came into media later said.

To make administrative rules and procedures people-friendly, Modi further asked the bureaucrats to simplify and streamline the runnings. He said that “there may be rules and processes which have become out dated, and instead of serving the process of governance, they are leading to an avoidable confusion”. The new PM also stressed to identify and do away with such archaic rules and procedures.

The two-and-a-half hour marathon meeting was intended to give the bureaucracy a greater role in decision-making with thrust on transparency and speedy and effective governance. In the meeting Modi listened extensively to the top bureaucrats and shared with their sentiments and circumstances.

He also stressed that implementation of decisions and programmes should not stuck in red-tape and asked secretaries to call or email him directly for suggestions or intervention required in resolving issues or expediting decisions.

It is first time a meeting by a Prime Minister directly with all the secretaries without ministers. During the meeting Modi made initial remarks and then asked secretaries to raise issues.

Discussions focused more on making governance more effective and about 25 secretaries spoke on the sectoral issues under their responsibility. Inflation, fiscal consolidation, controlling the current account deficit, clarity on tax administration and disinvestment in non-core sectors like steel and cement were the topics in the notes of Finance Ministry officials.

Commerce Secretary Rajeev Kher's agenda topped issues like e-commerce retail, railways and construction development, hurdles in land acquisition and cumbersome project clearances and liberalising the FDI policy in defence, as reported by the media.

Power Ministry's top focus was round-the-clock power supply and easing of fuel shortages. And the Oil Ministry listed a list of pending decisions, including an increase in natural gas prices which was due on April 1.

Steels and Mines ministry's focused areas were divestment of stake in PSUs such as SAIL and opening of closed mines.

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