Divisional Commissioner

Divisional Commissioner is the administrative head of a division. The role of a Divisional Commissioner's office is to act as the supervisory head of all the State Government Offices (except the central government offices) situated in the division. A Divisional Commissioner are given the direct responsibility of supervising the revenue and development administration of a division. Officers at this post are transferred and promoted by State Governments. This post exists in many states of India. Divisional Commissioner is responsible for administration and planned development of the districts under his control and also act as "Appeal Adalat" for revenue cases.

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History of Divisional CommissionerEdit

The Division as an administrative level came into being in 1829 as a result of increase in scope of operations corresponding to the expansion of British Territories. Each division was put under the charge of a Divisional Commissioner. This post was created by then the Bengal Government.The institution of Divisional Commissioner was created by Lord William Bentick. The appointment of commissioners in the subsequently acquired provinces of Punjab, Burma, Oudh and the Central Province followed in due course.

The Royal Commission for Decentralisation, 1907 recommended its retention. The issue, however continued to crop up again and again, particularly at the time of constitutional reforms of 1919, 1935, and 1947. After independence, the state governments merely tinkered with traditional revenue set-up and the states of Maharashtra, Rajasthan, and Gujarat abolished the posts of divisional commissioners but later revived them except in Gujarat.[1]

DivisionsEdit

Powers of Divisional Commissioner[2]Edit

  • Acts as Appellate Authority on decisions of various departments of division.
  • Control over revenue administration and holds revenue courts.
  • Maintenance of law and order
  • Ensure proper and effective co-ordination among the various organizations of the Government and public.
  • Supervise, guide and control the various offices in the division.
  • Supervision of the development functions such as poverty alleviation, civil supplies, employment generation, drinking water, primary health, primary education and development of infrastructure, etc.
  • Coordination and supervision over the all the departments. of the division.
  • Control over local govt.
  • Financial control over preparation of budget of Development Authorities, Municipal Corporations/Councils and other departments.
  • Writing of annual confidential reports of most of officers who are head of a department in Divisional or District level.
  • Consolidation of various statistics for the division.
  • Acts as Chairman of all development authorities in divisions.
  • His approval is needed for the grant of certain types of licenses for the firearms.

Role of Divisional Commissioner[3]Edit

The Divisional Commissioner performs a variety of roles in regional administration. Today, District Collectors are quite junior officers, needing the guidance and supervision of a seasoned administrator like the Divisional Commissioner. During the British period a member of the ICS was normally appointed a Collector of the district in his twelfth year. Today a member of the Indian Administrative Services becomes a District Collector after putting in only 5 or 6 years of service. With his insufficient administrative experience, a District Collector of today necessarily needs guidance. The Divisional Commissioners, therefore, are a necessary part of the governmental machinery.

Apart from giving expert advice, the Divisional Commissioners also provide direct communication with a large number of heads of districts. The Commissioner is a regional coordinator. Posted at the divisional level, he coordinates the work of various departments in his division in a way that no other administrative ingenuity can. The Divisional Commissioners are instruments of decentralized coordination, The activities of different departments of the Government, especially those .engaged in development programmes, though varying in nature, are interlinked and there are often a number of common problems which need immediate attention and resolution. At the regional level, this coordination is brought about by the Commissioners. It is only an officer who is intimately aware of the problems of the region and the day-to-day working of different governmental departments at the regional and district levels that can effectively coordinate their working and find agreeable solutions to inter-departmental problems.

The Commissioner is the effective agency to supervise and inspect the work of district offices, both police and revenue, to enforce efficiency. The Commissioner is a necessary intermediate link between the Government and the district administration, shielding one against the other.

  1. A channel of communication between the districts and state govt.
  2. Regional coordinating authority for technical departments.
  3. Provides help, guide and assistance to Deputy Commissioner
  4. Provides expert advice to headquarters

A Divisional Commissioner is assisted by some officers for carrying out day-to-day work in various fields:-

  1. Joint Development Commissioner
  2. Additional Commissioners of (Judicial), (Industries), (Administration), (Excise), (Labor), (Rural Development) and other wings.
  3. I.A.S or state civil services officers at district level reports only when ordered so by Divisional Commissioner.

ReferencesEdit