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bureaucracy (noun) government by departmental officials with rigid procedures; government officials collectively; government officialdom.

A government by the departmental officials, imposing rigid procedures, is bureaucracy. Following strict official procedures and causing avoidable inconveniences and delays is bureaucracy. When an elected government suddenly falls for some reason, the officials take over the administration. Usually officials are rule-minded, stick to procedures even in very simple matters, and delay work. Such a rule is called bureaucracy. All government officials, collectively, are also called bureaucracy. 'The project is being delayed because of the bureaucracy.' This means, the officials by insisting on rules and procedures are causing delays. Officialdom, that is, dominance by officials, is also bureaucracy.

  • The bureaucracy gives more importance to rules, than to the needs and conveniences of people for whom they are meant. Bureaucrats feel that people are for rules, and not rules are for people.
  • The procedures of bureaucracy hinder speedy justice and speedy execution, and often result in red tape.
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Last Modified : 11-May 2009
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