Why would someone consider serving others while she/he is indoctrinated to be superior to them? How would such a ‘’superior’’ person consider others who are not superior like him/her? If I do not take the liberty of using the antonym inferior? These and a host of other questions popped up in my head recently when I thought about the mechanism of getting inducted into the civil services of Pakistan, whose examination is called the CSS (Central Superior Services) examination.
It goes without saying that colonial powers across the world have devised policies only to rule with an iron hand. The psychological effects of which we can abundantly witness among our people. Bureaucracy is an institution in any state which is responsible for the execution and implementation of policies. These policies are made and devised by the politicians, keeping in view the wellbeing and welfare of the people. And the crucial part of this is the smooth implementation. This is only possible if the gap between the executive and the people is minimal to zero.
But what about the lot which is supposed to work in the superior services of a country? What kind of gap and how much gap could one possibly expect between such superiors and others. One can have little debate over the fact that such titles can help inculcate a sense of pride. But here the basic fault lies in our understanding of pride. We normally take it as being superior to others and have ourselves served; whereas, in reality, it stands succinctly the opposite. Superiority and pride necessarily come with the sense of serving others. It is attained by creating ease for others.
Bureaucracy in Pakistan
One can feel pride in the service of humanity. And, one can also stand superior to others only if one is superior at serving others. And the history of mankind is replete with such examples which can bear witness to my statement. Now, in Pakistan, the bureaucracy is on record as treating others as lesser human beings. However, a little improvement can be seen in the attitudes of a few – thanks to the ever-vigilant media! But a small change in the attitudes is insufficient so long as the title remains the same. This is bound to infuse a sense of distorted pride which compels one to treat fellow humans as sons of lesser gods.
Pakistan should learn some lessons from its neighbor where the title of this service is the civil services with that country’s name before it. There is no expression such as superior or higher etc. And, here the psychological effect can be visualized. Hammering one thing repeatedly over and over again on the dumbest brain ever can make it responsive to it, let alone the bureaucracy.
Pakistan needs to realize that it is high time the government thought about changing the nomenclature from a difference-making and gap-encouraging CSS to a more mundane and humble sounding CCS (Central Civil Services).
It will definitely bridge the gap between the bureaucrats and masses and will also help the civil servants realize that they are there to serve others by considering them as equal humans, without any superiority or inferiority for that matter. It will in turn bring more efficiency in the performance of our civil bureaucracy. The masses will also begin to own their bureaucrats which is, unfortunately not the case owing to their so-called superior attitudes. This will eventually reduce the gap between them and the ones they are supposed to effectively and efficiently serve.