`Notes for Cabinet, GoMs should be of high quality`

Unhappy with the quality of notes prepared for meetings of the Union Cabinet and Group of Ministers, the Cabinet Secretariat has directed all departments and ministries not to rush with the documents at the last minute.

Last Updated: Oct 26, 2011, 18:15 PM IST

New Delhi: Unhappy with the quality of notes
prepared for meetings of the Union Cabinet and Group of
Ministers, the Cabinet Secretariat has directed all
departments and ministries not to rush with the documents at
the last minute but to prepare them well in advance while
ensuring they are of "high quality and rocedurally-compliant".

"Notes for consideration of the cabinet/ cabinet
committees/ EGoMs etc have to be of a high quality and
procedurally compliant, "a recent cabinet secretariat
circular notes”.

"However, in some case, it is seen that the notes
forwarded by the ministries, departments are often rushed just
one of two days prior to the scheduled meeting, which hardly
leaves any time for scrutiny of notes by the cabinet
secretariat," says an October 10 circular of the Cabinet
Secretariat posted on its website.

The circular, issued by Alok Rawat, Secretary
(Coordination and Grievances) in the Cabinet Secretariat,
mentions unhappiness expressed by Finance Minister Pranab
Mukherjee over the quality of one of the notes put up before
an Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM).

"Incidentally, Minister of Finance had also mentioned
about quality of an EGoM note in an EGoM meeting held
recently," it states.

Through the circular, the Cabinet Secretariat instructed
the ministries and the concerned departments to ensure that
the notes for EGoMs and GoMs are "procedurally compliant,
informative, concise and based on inter-ministerial
consultations."

Interestingly, the Cabinet Secretariat had previously
also tried to ensure that the quality of notes for important
meetings remains of a high standard and had even put up
written guidelines for preparation of notes on its website.

The guidelines mention that "Special attention needs to
be paid to the quality of drafting. The note, while being
brief, should bring out all relevant details and no material
fact should remain unstated. The main note should be self-
contained, lucid, straightforward and contain only the
relevant details."

The Ministries/Departments must plan their activities
in such a manner that the proposals for consideration of the
Cabinet/Cabinet Committee(s) are not sent just before
these are to be announced or operationalised leaving little
time for examination of the pertinent issues"," the Cabinet
Secretariat guidelines released earlier state.

PTI