Next time you meet such a gent ( and I know many many such people), ask him how he feels about his bosses lying to the public about state of technologies and choices being made:
XYZ will be "completed" in 6 months, it has been "tested successfully", awards handed out for "successes" purely for political reasons, glamorous projects chosen over more substantive and useful projects, "high tech" Padma-XX award winning, headline making projects being prioritized over more useful ones to the Armed Services etc.
There's a huge difference between decrying a system where there is no accountability for actions/choices because of lack of transparency vs. questioning the patriotism of people working in it. The worst hatred of the former is in the hearts of the latter... and we on the outside, if we are not willing to spread some sunshine into this world to protect and encourage them are not doing them any favors. The reality is, these people are still in a minority, and the only way to transform the system is to kill the "other crabs" who pull these people down because they are shown in a bad light by the high performers... its far more comfortable if everyone does less, and awards go to the politically connected, or to those belonging to the right clique, or to the right village in Tamil Nadu/Punjab/Bengal/take-your-pick, or to the right college.
Praise the good - but equally, very quickly and harshly, weed out the bad - if you don't do that, the whole garden goes to seed... There are no absolutes in anything - and a wholesale "pass" for the weeds is just as bad as a wholesale fail for the garden
Agupta ji, there are good and bad folks across the board in India and its pretty irrelevant to todays situation, if I may say so, that you have to respond to a post pointing out how patriotic some people are with the working assumption that this man would be working with crooks & that most of the folks in that organization would be crooks.
First, it would be churlish beyond measure, for instance, if I were to meet somebody from the Army, I should start asking them about how they feel about "ketchup colonels" and "torturing Col Purohit" or how for the past several years political connections have led to some really dodgy decisions?
Or is the average jawan or the line officer deployed at the LOC responsible for these occasional travesties and should he be harangued for such stuff? You think they'd appreciate these efforts to spread "sunshine" or wouldn't they be offended and angry at my insolence?
If I meet somebody from AIIMS, I should say "so how do you feel about crooked doctors and political connections getting you to the top"? It would be petty of me.
Or do I acknowledge the fact that the vast majority of folks in many of these orgs do yeoman work & to little public knowledge, irrespective of the bad apples or choices at some positions?
Second, and this is the crux of the issue, in your viewpoint: "The reality is, these people are still in a minority, and the only way to transform the system is to kill the "other crabs" who pull these people down because they are shown in a bad light by the high performers"
.. where is the evidence that this is the "reality"?Perhaps
it was so in your time in a place or two, but I'd submit its not so *today* and has not been so for quite some time, wherein the vast majority of people who are working in these orgs are patriotic, do their job & are committed. I fear you are very badly mistaken about both these organizations & the people working in them, for what drives them is pride in their work & their organizations.
Its not that hard to look through folks & understand what makes them tick either when one meets them.
Over the past decade or so, I have had the opportunity to meet folks across a host of electronics, materials science & other labs. They were dedicated, committed & were promoted, selected on the basis of far more stringent norms than is the norm in many so called elite private sector places (where BTW, the stories of "jugaad" and "connections" are equally legion).
That they managed successful programs pointed to the fact that there respective orgs did what was right as well.
They don't need our patronizing comments about their organization being "xyz" and "that I am spreading sunshine" on their behalf.
What they do need, from time to time, is the occasional comment that the average person in India appreciates their work, understands that its not easy and that they should remain at it & get it done.
These folks are the high performers
, they are rising within the system, getting things done & they don't need us to tell them how to manage their lives when PRIDE in their work and their organizations is what keeps them going.
As matter of fact, the most objective criteria, to determine that the majority of people in these organizations are delivering, is very simply product based. In the past decade or thereabouts, LRDE has put in around ten radars into service, has another bunch in trials, DARE has churned out many iterations of electronic gear, RCI/DRDL/ASL have managed to get out missile after missile into service, DMRL has managed to get several breakthroughs in basic metallurgy to get our ships etc made of local stuff.... the list goes on and on..
There are several high profile programs which are still yet to get out of the woods (e.g. LCA) but then these typify what is the problem.
In a nutshell. Our basic challenges with timelines & so forth are not some cabal of crooks conspiring to keep others down & garnering all the great accolades. Logically, since those so called accolades are worth peanuts, compared to private remuneration - ask around as to what a typical Scientist F/G/H, today can command in many orgs for sitting at the top & merely giving high level gyaan and recommendations.
The problem is pure and simple dysfunctional program management structures where folks are sitting in silos and the left hand doesn't care what the right does, because of ego clashes.
In far too many programs, there was a split between program management, to production to user involvement.
This has been addressed to some extent by embedding service personnel into the programs themselves (eg fighter pilots at DARE for EW) but there is a continued lack of institutionalization (what happens to these people after they move back to the parent org, what happens to the experience) and the conflict of interest inherent in DPSUs committing to such programs. Why would a HAL spend heavily on LCA when it can get equal profit or more from assembling..err...making a Rafale.
These are the primary issues which lead to lack of transparency & missed timelines *today*. Completely messed up structural setups with no clear ownership of what should be national programs. HAL running around with an IJT over the LCA. Army going around with T-90 over Arjun, OFB managing neither & Russia making money, shamelessly gypping us seeing our desparation, files being pushed around on Scorpene till it comes in with far more escalated cost & even when it does, indigenization goes for a toss incidentally when IAF tries to play hardball on Mirage 2000 spares..
These are the fundamental problems that dog our establishment. And to some extent they are deliberate. An open competition for lower priced trucks for instance would have killed a line of "profitable" east European imports that benefited some folks in the previous dispensation.
I expect, in the coming years, the new dispensation to take these sort of decisions and not being tied to the nice gravy strings of imports to take the relatively simple measures of setting up a proper control mechanism for many of these large programs. That in itself will tie everyone together & all these debates over transparency, accountability etc will go for a toss because everyone will be in the same cooking pot looking outwards, as versus everyone becoming a food critic & the cook engaging in revising the ingredients every two minutes & saying yes, yes - almost ready.