How about making prime minister a three-member body?

If CAG needs professional help and hence be made multi-member, so does the PM


Prasanna Mohanty | November 12, 2012

PM Manmohan Singh
PM Manmohan Singh

V Narayansamy, the MoS in PMO with a reputation for spouting brilliant ideas, has come out with an absolute gem: convert the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) into a three-member body to make it more transparent and professionally more competent.

He hasn’t explained the transparency bit but it is obvious. He has been accusing CAG of “frequent draft report leaks”. If one Vindo Rai can leak a series of scams to have hit the nation (CWG, 2G, ISRO spectrum and coal block allotments and so on), imagine what three Rais can do to transparency in governance!

As for the professional competence, Narayansamy can’t be faulted for saying that at least one member in CAG should have professional accounting qualifications, like chartered accountancy or its equivalent. After all, CAG is the official auditor of the government and needs a professional hand. Rai is just a (retired) career bureaucrat.

(To be true to the episode, Narayansamy had said in an interview to the news agency, PTI, that a proposal to make CAG a three-member body was under “active consideration” of the government. The proposal had come from former CAG VK Shunglu, who last probed into the CWG scam, in a letter to the PM. It was Shunglu who had suggested that this would improve transparency and professional competence and hence had suggested at least one member should have professional accounting competence.)

Narayansamy has since denied having said it (as PTI reported subsequently even while standing by its earlier story that Narayansamy had indeed said so).

We have no reason to doubt. Maybe he said it not for CAG but something else. Say, for example, for PM.

Now, take a fresh look at the proposition and see the sheer brilliance.

For the past three years, PM is getting hit repeatedly. He is accused of being a “nikamma”, a “nincompoop” and worse. But take a careful look. He is only an executive head with no ‘political’ power. That rests with UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi.

Similarly, since he has no political power he has no political authority over the allies. So, when the 2G scam hit he honestly blamed it on the “coalition compulsion”.  After a court judgment made a distinction between the PM and the PMO, we know how difficult it is to work as a PM.

He needs professional help.

So, how about a case for a three-member PM? One PM can act as an executive officer (to execute what may be a valid question but not relevant here). The second PM should be a career politician to manage the politics of governance. The third should have experience in handling difficult regional satraps, existing or potential allies like Mamata Banerjee, Mayawati, Jayalalithaa, Karunanidhi, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Lalu Prasad.

Just do it and let’s see how that changes our fate.

What do you say, Mr Narayansamy?




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