February 14, 2016 10:13:30 am
As aN ex-bureaucrat who held the environment and forest portfolio, firelines or Jaalresha was the usual method of clearing the vegetation in the hopes of stopping or at least slowing a fire. The creation of firelines is known to be critical in wildland fire fighting, because without them, a fire can quickly get out of control.
It best describes life and careers of bureaucrats who have to face many such situations and for retired bureaucrat and state’s first woman election commissioner, Neela Satyanarayan, the written word or a book is all set to chart out her career of 42 years listing out 56 different experiences.
The book, to be released by Maharashtra Governor C Vidyasagar Rao and actor Nana Patekar February 20, will see the retired officer donate her royalties to Patekar’s Naam foundation that works in the drought prone areas of Marathwada to prevent farmers’ suicides.
“It is the daily reporting of farmers’ suicides from the Marathwada region that has prompted me to announce this and my way of giving back to the society and the book is glimpse of a bureaucrat’s various experiences,” shared Satyanarayana ahead of the book release. Having already 23 books to her credit, in genres such as poetry and prose, novels and even film lyrics, the prolific writer, who has held senior posts at secretary level, principal secretary and additional chief secretary, the managing director of MAVIM has selected some of her experiences and how she tackled them.
“Whether it is good work or criticism, a bureaucrat continues to work unfettered by the comments and setbacks. As a woman, the journey was more difficult unlike it is now. It’s about time that woman bureaucrats are treated as officers on par with male officers. I had to face several ups and downs and through this book and experiences I want to reach out to other aspiring woman officers,” she says. Not wanting to reveal much about the contents of the book ahead of the release, Satyanarayan says that there were some bitter experiences where she was given a posting and then it was called off due to some allegations and how only by committed work towards her goals was she able to prove her mettle.
Hurdles, she says, were many and tackling politicians was just among one of them and even facing trouble from her own colleagues was tough and each of the experiences from different sections aims to help to bring out the strength to fight back and give to the society. With this being the main thrust, and having spent all her life in IAS, she decided to dedicate her book for the farmers in the Marathwada region with 89 farmers suicides being reported.
“I came across the Naam foundation that was working for the benefit of farmers and have tied up with them. The foundation was started by actors Nana Patekar and Makrand Anaspure which came about in the last year and has emerged after hearing the devastating conditions of drought and listening to the agony of drought affected farmers in the state. This is my way of reaching out to them,” says the bureaucrat. “There are books on how to prepare for IAS and even rules and guidelines, but it’s experience and how as an officer you tackle a particular situation that will be a learning experience for others who read it,” shares Satyanarayana.
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