Three Cheers: Himachal CM deserves a pat


By: Rakesh Kumar Sharma

Prem Kumar Dhumal’s government has so far taken three important decisions within a month of assuming office, which certainly need appreciation. But unfortunately, all newspapers circulated in Himachal do not include any column going beyond press notes/conferences. Editorial pages have no relevance for the issues of Himachal Pradesh. In this scenario, citizens find an opportunity through the modern media like internet websites like this to criticize the wrong policies and appreciate good decisions. Whereas, the criticism with logic can send a positive message to policy makers, appreciation is also must for encouragement. Otherwise, people are less motivated for reforms and choose to live in a stationary state.

Firstly,  an increase of Rs 25 (19%) in minimum wages and an increase of Rs. 100 (50%) in social security pension and that too not before elections is a dynamic step. Governments all over the world owe primary obligation to work for the provision of living wages and basic social security in old age. By this decision, the government has proved its commitment for this unorganised sector. This decision has much more significance than the provision of interim relief and dearness allowance to salaried government employees. Unfortunately, we ignore the fast declining purchasing power of wages; therefore, do not want to increase wages/cooliage for years.

Secondly, Dhumal’s appeal to people, asking them to stop wasting resources on procuring garlands and gifts in official functions and to say Namaskar instead of touching his feet is exemplary to the whole nation. In this way he has shown a great respect to the people and also to the famous poet Pt. Makhan Lal Chaturvedi, who had explained the true desire of a flower in his poem “Pushp ki Abhilasha“. These types of appeals, perhaps derive courage from the idealism only as we human beings have a weakness to enjoy such things. The famous writer, Munshi Prem Chand had clearly depicted this human weakness in his story “Muft ka Yash“. The history of human evolution explains it very clearly, how people started to worship God. In monarchy, kings also started enjoying some respect in the similar fashion due to the concentration of all powers. The people also carried the similar traditions even in the democratic set up, to please the policy makers for getting a preferential treatment. Our leaders and bureaucrats owe a moral responsibility to work for the welfare of whole society, which should not be influenced by any means of sycophancy.

Finally, prohibiting school children to attend government functions was direly needed. Children in government schools were seen as the crowd component and entertaining media in all such functions. Entry of all people in the school premises during teaching hours was not only interrupting studies but also damaging the school infrastructure, already in poor shape across the state. This is one of the important decisions, needed to improve the quality of education in government run institutions. Only time will tell, how seriously the government implements these reforms.

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  1. Really we should congratulate Mr. Dhumal for his brave and people friendly decisions. smal states like himachal cannot afford to waste resourcesand public money in any form. In fact we need a strong chief minister with gritand determination to implement people friendly policies. yaa he deserves a pat.

  2. I hope the words are backed by action. and if professor Dhumal is able to take it up in letter and spirit, I must say, he is on the right track. Hope he doesn't lose steam. And the sadkon wala mukhya mantri takes up his pet project again. The roads.

  3. I think, the CM is also trying to minimize the use of chopper.

    "The Tribune" has a reported about such a decision today.

    Tribune Link:

    We all understand the busy schedule of any Chief Minister but we should not forget that we are living in Himachal and not in UP and Bihar. It will be however, slightly difficult to break the past traditions of royal living.

  4. Iam really surprised,the way this heading is written—I dont think so it is too early to pat the CM ,still it is complete FIVE YEARS to go.

    There are thousands of core ISSUES like poverty and corruption eradication( Remember the KATWAL CASE is during the –BJP period ;employment and infrastructure development.still there are thousands of cases in the court which are pending and are favoured for the rich people.



  5. @Amit

    I appreciate your comment, but the duty of critic is also to see the positive side, for necessary encouragement and build a pressure on politicians for addressing more such issues. While the first decision is now a reality but it will be the future that will tell the fate of other two big decisions. The culture of sycophancy in Himachal has reached heights over the last few years. Daily use of flowers and gifts in official function across the state is in lakhs, to please the politicians and other VIPs. Moreover, the government school children are treated as a crowd component and entertainment media by these politicians, whose children are studying in convents and expensive public schools. I think we have turned insensitive to such issues and do not want to appreciate even the acknowledgment of these as problems.

  6. Dear Mr. Sharma

    Its too early to comment on populist decisions taken .

    1. It would have much better had Govt. linked wages with Inflation index for yearly revision.

    2. Govt to focus on industrial development in the state . This area is constantly unaddressed .

  7. @Mr. Nadda,

    Thanks for the comment. Before writing this article, the same question about early appreciation also came into my mind. But I thought it appropriate for the motivational purpose only. (You can read my reply about the similar comment by Mr. Amit and the first paragraph of article)

    I am an ordinary citizen who love Himachal and try to highlight only those issues otherwise forgotten somewhere. There are many people of similar name in Himachal and so should not be treated as an act of sycophancy for benefits. You will constantly notice me writing about any wrong doing of the government also. That is perhaps the true spirit of citizen journalism.

    We cannot ignore the importance of social security pension, which is increased by 50%. The earlier increase of 100% (from Rs. 100 to Rs. 200) was also given by the Dhumal government in earlier regime. About 20% increase in minimum wages may look populist but such a populism should be welcomed at least by the people fighting for daily living, that too not a month before elections but after elections are over. By understanding the nature of price effect on money wages than the salaries, I had also pointed about its significance over DA and interim relief to salaried class. I fully agree with you about linking it to CP index but this also depends on the government's will which makes us optimist by the current decision.

    There are off course many issues like industrialization, tourism development, unemployment etc. to be addressed. But I am at least happy with the beginning and optimist for future. If it fails to deliver, people do not spare anyone! It is for sure.

    Had I written it now I would have added the decisions like open access instead of darbar and removing unnecessary vehicles and district officer’s in respective boundaries following the cavalcade for the sake of protocol in this small peaceful state.

  8. First of all congratulations for Dr,Rakesh sharma for making an attempt to appreciate the decisions of intellectuals of our statecraft,

    for some it may appears to be populist measure or for others, decision taken on keeping vote bank in mind ,what ever regards or orientation the intellectual of statecraft desreve cheers none the less the people of himachal who has brought the Government to power with majority desreves equally,The people of Himachal, who really know how to govern the state of Himachal when centre's celection is due in 2008,There is no doubt about the fact that its early to speculate what is going to be happen in near future ,how we are being governe?

    but the pertinent question arises here is that we should also learn to appreciate the good policy decisions taken by the government , we often forget good poicy decsions rather become too critical all of sudden ,as a citizen of India and part of himachal state we should look forward for positive things and do needful and contribute individually in our surroundings and at the arena of our social set up also ,Criticism should be constructive and supportive to the system to govern people more effectively and the best without any partyline comments ,we have to come out of our shell as individually and to shun our petty interests ,we should try to do our best by supporting the government whosoever is in power ,there is no hesitation to me what appears through Dr.rakesh sharma's article needs appreciation for having courage to say the fact and the real by expressing his opinion.

  9. Dear Rakesh,

    we really need to appreciate good deeds done,not only by Govt but also by people too.

    Govt should come out with action plan for 5 years, a calender.

    they ought to work in all areas ,

    specially schemes where more jobs are generated.

  10. I agree that these are positive steps. Another step I would like to see is to stop inviting netas for every minor new bridge, road and building "shilanyas". Also netas of Himachal can move less conspicuosly since there is no major threat to thier lives.

    Also any himachali neta with a paunch should be asked to travel on foot and do trekking. Since when have himachlis started having paunches!

    Also any kind of rgerssive behaviour in name fof tradtion should be banned , like touching neta's feet.

    BTW, I think old template n this site was better.

  11. These decisions are off course exemplary to the whole nation but only time will tell how seriously government sticks to this idealism or prove it like another populist propaganda.

  12. It is difficult to desist from appreciating some more good decisions that will definitely help common man in Himachal Pradesh. One such decision is the removal of unnecessary protocol for district officials to follow chief minister/ministers.


    Now a recent decision banning all kinds of gifts/mementos/shawls/topies etc. will also help in controlling the sycophancy levels in this state which was reaching the standard of UP and Bihar over the last few years.


    Government officials always mastered in the adjustments of these items to some other accounting heads. Despite knowing everything, our so called “representatives” as well as “public servants” customized this corrupt practice and enjoyed immensely with the public money. It was very surprising for me to see how a state supported bank in loss managed to purchase flowers worth Rs.19000 and shawls/topies worth Rs. 28000 for an hour long function last year. Now, we can think about the expenditure levels in many such functions daily.

  13. Congratulationss to C.M.saheb ! Congrats to Rakesh Sharma.Its easy to criticise.Anyone can be a master fault-finder.It taks brain to point out the good quality.Our Ex-President,before taking the chair he gave example of Media in Israel;publishing good news in news paper was more important than the bad news.

    Yes,the issue of Indutrial development is well pointed out.Another issue is of removing rstriction of settlement of people from other states.Today our himachal state subject goes outside the state to seek employement.From Punjab to Delhi–transport & Petrol pumpms are manned by our people only.The economy can not improve.If more venues are open in own state they will stay home & earn.Our state will attract other people to come& work here.

    Today USA has suffered the decline.Her own people are not used to hard work & industry suffered labor.The whole country,even UK is suffering.Do not be surprised if Rupee replaces dollar in a decade or so.These countries denied God,they turn to all wickedness & thus called for the wrath of God.All over USA & UK unemployment & homeless is at rampage.The rules & facilities encourage people to live immoral life.

    On the otherhand no one can have real freedom either.In 1995,Goverment in one state(Texas) had authorised all people to own a weapon to guard them self.

    India is far better country today in comparison to Europe & Western life.

    Globalisation/Environmental issue is a big farce started by them.The reality has come to surface.The scientists at NASA & elsewhere are defying the call of globalisation.

    I wish our Chief Minister may get wise on the subect & can take the lead with proper intelects' guidance from the concerned sectors.

    Our state is Geographically on top of the country with Kashmir at par with us.We have better situation to take the lead to improve our outlook & attitude to some salient issues.We need to think that we are major part of the country,be proud to be Indian citizen & do not follow the old pattern of Kings to stay devided for power & invite the enemy to take the benefit,as in Hindustan's time;prior to British Rule.

    For example,consider just one factor,with the aim to impress the west we folowed blindly & shut down Industries,truck & buses suffered months bycott for CNG stuff & smoke problem.Now the old findings are being realised that we were expecting Ice Age danger & the propaganda has led the otherway around.

    Its just a food for thought in this page to pnder over.Do some home work & get the facets of all such issues & be blessing to our country.

  14. Dear Friends

    So far the notification of increase in wages is not issued … It was a populist decision in wake of Hamirpur Loksabha seat. It was clear to him that his son is going to fight .




  15. i would first like to congratulate my fellow himachali's at himvani to have come up with himvani.

    as far as we are talking about the steps taken by our CM we all agree that they are commendable.

    what bothers me is that the development of our state does not happen uniformly.politicians at higher positions tend to get biased when it comes to allocating funds or taking the pains to come up with some policy that would particularly benifit their region.

    people who can make the difference just let go of their oppurtunity.

    average himachali voter has become all the more aware of his veto power but then once the govt is elected people tend to take the back seat,WHY?

    all we need is to empower people.

    and see our land prosper!

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