Civil Services Day – April 21
Civil Services Day is celebrated in India on April 21st every year when civil servants re-dedicate themselves to the cause of the citizens and renew their commitment to public services. The day was chosen as it was on this day country’s first home minister Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel, addressed the first batch of civil servants in Independent India at the Metcalf House where he referred to civil servants as the ‘steel frame of India’ in his inspiring speech.
The civil service is the most visible ‘face’ of the government since citizens contact the civil servants for various services. The government’s image depends to a large extent on the image of the civil service and the manner in which it responds to people’s needs and aspirations. They are entrusted with formulating and implementing policies, maintaining law and order, delivering public services, and developing stronger ties with other countries.
Civil Services day was held for the first time in the year 2006 on the 21st of April and it has been held continuously since then on the same date.
Sardar Patel delivered his first speech
Sardar Patel was the first Home Minister of Independent India and his uncompromising efforts towards consolidation of the country earned him the title ‘Iron Man of India’. It was on April 21st, 1947, a few months before Independence when the first home minister of India delivered a powerful speech on this day to the first batch of officers of the Indian Administrative Services (IAS). In his speech, Sardar Patel had referred to the bureaucrats as the “steel frame of India“.
“You are the pioneers in the Indian Service, and the future of this service will depend much upon the foundation and traditions that will be laid down by you, by your character and abilities, and by your spirit of service,” He said
He also stated that replacing the Indian Civil Services that operated in British India by the IAS marked the “inauguration of an all-India Service officered entirely by Indians and subject completely Indian control.”
Branches of civil services
Civil services are the backbone of the administrative machinery of the country. They are the real policymakers of the country and run the government from behind the curtain. They are responsible for public administration services like Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Police Service (IPS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), and a comprehensive list of All India Services and Central Services Group A and Group B. All these officers form a strong structure of the Indian administrative system.
Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Public Administration
Prime Ministers Awards for Excellence in Public Administration is designed to acknowledge, recognize and reward the extraordinary and innovative work done by officers of the Central and State Governments for the welfare of the common citizens. The awards comprising a medal, certificate, and cash amount for individuals as well as groups and organizations.
On this day, districts and implementing units are conferred the Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Public Administration for carrying out priority programs and innovative work. These awards on the Civil Services day each year bring together civil servants to connect with each other and learn the good practices being implemented across the nation in the field of public grievance.
The Civil Service is a professional service and forms the backbone of our governance structure. This annual affair is eagerly awaited by all public administrators to celebrate the outcomes of work done in the entire year. On this National Civil Services Day, let us appreciate the workforce of the civil services in India who always make the country proud.