Importance of Bureaucracy and its Characteristics

Bureaucracy : its Characteristics & Importance

Bureaucracy is derived from the term "Bureau" which means an officer post. Bureaucracy is an administration which is conducted  by the bureaucrats. Bureaucracy is mainly a regulated administrative service system which has organised as a service of inter-related offices. Bureaucracy is the term applied to a system of government, the control of which is so complete in the hands of the officials that their powerful jeopardises of the ordinary citizens. 

Characteristics of Bureaucracy :

According to Max Weber Bureaucracy has certain characteristics which are as follows :

i) The members of Bureaucracy are personally free and subject to authority only with respect to their impersonal official  obligations. 

ii) They are organised in a clearly defined hierarchy of the offices. 

iii) Each office has a clearly defined sphere of competence in the legal sense

iv) The officers killed by a free contractual relationship. Thus in principle, there is a free selection on the basis of merit. 

v) Candidates are selected on the basis of qualifications. They are appointed, not elected. 

vi) They are remunerated by fix salaries in money for the most part with a right to pensions

vii) It constitutes a career. According to the seniority or achievement there is a system of promotion. 

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Importants of Bureaucracy :

A democratic government cannot function in the absense of a competent and efficient civil service.  It is the permanent brain trust of the government.  The ministers are temporary as day come and go frequentl. The ministers are politicians. They have no Administrative Training and hence they do not know the skills of Administration. They are amateurs in the art of Administration.  so the ministers are bound to depend on the advice of civil servants who are experts in the field of Administration. 

The legislation makes laws as the constitution to serve the people better in a democracy. The ministers frame the policies of the government. The efficient execution of policies and enforcement of laws depend on the Civil servants. Good government is good administration. If the administration is not efficient the government cannot be called good. 

Democratic government cannot exist if it is not in a position to provide clean and efficient administration. Efficiency and incorruptibility of Administration who is shape the future of a democratic government. The Bureaucracy can dig the grave of democratic government if it wants and at the same time it can provide stability to the government by discharging its duties efficiently. 

Bureaucracy has become so important to day that a Modern Government cannot survive without it. But in modern democratic state it is very difficult to point out where Bureaucracy begins and where it ends. It is noticed in every sphere of government. We cannot conceive of a government without bureaucracy. 

In addition officials in certain positions are expected to explain the government policy to the people and to win their cooperation in its implementation. All these functions of the public officials are exercise in the context of parliamentary democracy in India. A public official is accountable directly to the political executive and indirectly through him to the Parliament and the people. 

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