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These subversions of the system are, arguably, especially brazen in Haryana, but they are by no means confined to the state. Across the country, in many states, public appointments in the police, schools and other government agencies are largely the gift of politicians, and each change in government brings about a fresh wave of appointments. This is a repudiation of the very basis of merit-based work, and it distorts all the institutions it touches. This "spoils system" means that public employees are defined by their loyalty to political leaders and beholden to them for their jobs, in exchange for cash, support or both. During the previous Samajwadi Party dispensation in Uttar Pradesh, Mulayam Singh Yadav recruited more than 18,000 police constables, most of them allegedly drawn from his own political base. When it came to power in 2007, the BSP immediately cancelled these recruitments. Patronage-based appointments skew the incentives of employees, making each level of the system hostage to one or the other political party, rather than oriented towards the public.
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