Thursday, December 25, 2008

Root Cause Analysis and Sound Judicial System ~ Answer to counter the failure against terror

Definition: Root cause analysis (RCA) is a successful problem solving method aimed at identifying the root causes of problems or events. THE PRACTICE OF RCA IS PREDICATED ON THE BELIEF THAT PROBLEMS ARE BEST SOLVED BY ATTEMPTING TO CORRECT OR ELIMINATE ROOT CAUSES, AS OPPOSED TO MERELY ADDRESSING THE IMMEDIATELY OBVIOUS SYMPTOMS. By directing corrective measures at root causes, it is hoped that the likelihood of problem recurrence will be minimized.
In Layman term, it means to get to the core of the problem and fix that particular nut which is noisy rather than blaming or changing the entire machine.
After 26 / 11, we had Mr. P Chidambaram, new Home minister, coming out and acknowledging the lapses in security. He at least did it unlike Mr. Shivraj who is competent only in his fashion sense. But this leads to a new question. Where this self acknowledgment is leading us to?? And should the matter be considered over at only acknowledging things??
Well to accept the failure is the first and most important step to ensure winning in the future; but provided acceptance is taken just to be a step to move forward and not the means to cover up the present lapses from punitive action. Acknowledging failure should actually initiate the introspection and way to find out the present loop holes resulting in our loss.
Post 26 / 11, what we are seeing on political ground is buck passing (in disguise) and acknowledgment of failure despite of having information in bits and pieces scattered in different departments. IT IS SAID, IT WAS A SYSTEM FAILURE, BUT WHAT IS SYSTEM MADE OF, PEOPLE HOLDING THE POSITION, SYSTEM BY IN ITSELF CANNOT THINK AND ACT, BUT PEOPLE IN IT CAN. SO MORE THAN SYSTEM FAILURE, IT IS A FAILURE OF THE PEOPLE WHO WERE IN CHARGE.
Should we not micro manage things now?? As it is rightly said, if micro things are managed properly, macro stuff will be taken care of by its own.
In my view, system is a problem but more big and grave problem is less of proactive officials who are just part of system rather than doing their main job of securing people.
To start with, there were news floating around and even leaders have accepted that there was information about the ‘water route’ as medium of transport and chances of attacks on hotels in Mumbai. And what did we do?? Well …. Well …. Well …. Let’s not just answer “system failure” and end the topic.
If information was available to police or for that matter to ministry or intelligence who ever the recipient is, what did they do with the information? Again we should not blame police or ministry as a whole, but that particular officer who had that information, he should be interrogated. If he had passed on this information to his senior / deciding authority than what did the senior do? We should conduct this check until and unless we find that particular officer, who has not processed this information in yielding manner, AS THAT IS THE FOCAL POINT OF OUR FAILURE. Also, lame excuse of no proper system or infrastructure should not be listened, because we cannot have reactive forces safeguarding us. For if a Intelligence person had this information of terror attack and just because he don’t have authority to act gives him no right to sit quietly on the terror information, he has to be proactive and knock the doors in every possible way, and even after that if he is not successful than the higher authority who was instrumental in not hearing him or taking action should be charged for negligence. We also have news hungry media so official can take help and get the news to the right authority by whatever means, Bottom line is WE NEED PROACTIVE OFFICIALS WHO HAVE THE CAPACITY TO CHALLENGE THE IMPROPER SYSTEM AND SUBSEQUENTLY CHANGE AND MAKE IT A ROBUST SYSTEM, RATHER THAN JUST BEING A SMALL PART OF THE SYSTEM AND MOVING THE WAY AGE OLD SYSTEM INFRASTRUCTURE IS MOVING.
Finding root cause of ineffective or inactive nuts in our system infrastructure can help us tightening them. Also once there is a punitive supervision taking place on individual with surety of being charged for his lapses in his work will definitely help in reducing carelessness. Similarly this method can be used effectively in administrating and governing country.
Second important requirement is sound and robust judicial system; for we know even after Supreme Court passing the judgment it is not followed…. Hence action on judgment taken should be taken care of, As again mentioned in my previous blog, " Are we moving in right direction? Now At Last"...for all such cases there should be special court and should have dedicated judges under supervision of Chief Justice of India; Also there should be no place of political party involvement by way of Prime minister or even President. One of the basic requirements is that there should be no mercy petition.
I know and understand that this model attracts too much of doubt and chance bias judgment. Hence I advocate no political pressure; this court is autonomous and free from so called leaders.
Again, the above process is not RCA in totality but a step to solving the problem so as to avert the future loss. But this step is very much required as against the bold statement in fixing the blame or points the problem, what we should now do is to find solution, because we know the problem from past 61 years. Let’s move together as citizen with help of RTI and media to know where the core problem lies and who is the actually responsible for the lapses.


  1. well gr8 article and i believe you are right in your views

  2. Nicely put Jaymin, i admire the fact that you have quoted instances with valid data. You may also add the fact that certain politicians who have provided support to the present government have provided arms & financial support to the home grown terrorists (Naxals), so, if in case the home ministry take proactive steps to curb terror, they are pulled down. In all a fabulous effort !! Anticipating more on this blog.

    Jai Hind !
    Akhil Rana.

  3. @akhil: Thanx 4 d compliments n will certainly add up to ur suggestions as well :)