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News 2013 � September

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Fr VM Thomas tells Civil Servants ''Be the Change''

By C.M.Paul
Fr V.M. Thomas addressing Civil Servants at Don Bosco Provincial House, Guwahati.
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Guwahati, Sep. 4. Some 60 members of the Assam Civil Service undergoing induction programme at Assam Administrative Staff College Guwahati had a day-long session at Don Bosco Provincial House Guwahati, Fr Mario Hall on 4th September.
Fr V.M. Thomas, the Salesian provincial and popular trainer with Indian Administrative and Police Service was the chief resource person.

''You are the people with access to resources, decision making and influence, and you can be the change'' he told the young recruits who will pan out to all the districts of Assam.

He reminded the enthusiastic crowd who are 'part of the steel frame of the state, who if they wish, could transform the society.''

The state does not lack human and material resources. ''We have the best and forward looking policies in place,'' said Fr VM listing the many welfare schemes for the poor.

He shocked the participants with the tragedy of the civil administration saying, ''all that is required is implementation.''

The outlay and disbursements of funds takes place so slow, that too often the funds do not percolate to the panchayats and some 30 to 40 percent funds return unused.

Fr VM is convinced that, ''the problem is implementation - and they need to ensure speedy implementation of projects to accelerate development.''

He encouraged the new officers to have vision and a sense of mission for the people they hope to serve.

He insisted that, ''you are the lower level bureaucratic executives who are responsible for implementation of the government schemes and policies.''

''By networking with these young and idealistic people we are multiplying our hands,'' said Fr VM pointing out to 95 year old Italian born Indian missionary Fr Mario Porcu who spent 73 years in Assam.

Further explaining the reason why a Catholic priest should spend time with civil servants Fr VM added, ''this is high leverage, impact making activity where we can interface with government for nation building and social transformation.''

Fr VM is for over 15 years guest faculty both at Assam Administrative Staff College at Guwhati, and Meghalaya Administrative Training Institute in Shillong.
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