One-year degree holders rule the roost, eligible candidates bite the dust
JAMMU, June 14: Looks strange! But it is true that Physical Education Lecturers (PELs), who were promoted as Gazetted Officers (Lecturers), way back in 2008, are still waiting for their regularisation and for the removal of their pay anomaly, even after a lapse of over 13 long years.
The delay in the confirmation of PELs and a long wait for the removal of their pay anomaly is just a tip of an iceberg as a lot of similar problems are serving as a stumbling block in the services of these so-called Gazetted Officers who have been deprived of their rights from the word go, since their promotion.
According to reliable sources, the Department of Youth Services and Sports since its independent status in 1973, had been working rather functioning under the rules and regulations of its parent organization-the Department of Education and after its re-organization in the year 2006, it made series of endeavours and finally succeeded in establishing its own rules in 2015, but is yet to implement the same in letter and spirit, leaving a big number of DYSS employees, especially, the PELs in the lurch.
Sources said that apart from the creation of posts in the Central Secretariat of the Department like Joint Directors and Deputy Directors, maiden posts of 386 Physical Education Lecturers (PELs), with 50 percent DPC and remaining 50 percent via PSC, were created in the Department vide Govt Order No-140-Tech-Edu of 2006 dated 13-11-2006.
However, this cadre is receiving an indifferent treatment because of the non implementation of the departmental rules, which the DYSS has put in the dustbin and has thrown constitution into the winds. One witnesses a prolonged delay in their regularisation and in the removal of their pay anomaly.
Sources close to the Central Secretariat of the Department said that the Physical Education Teachers and Physical Education Masters have been drawing the salary at par with the Teachers and Masters of the Education Department, adding that the Physical Education Lecturers have been receiving a curt treatment with regard to their confirmation and Pay Scale despite clear-cut directions by the High Court vide No-14163 dated 31-08-2012.
“How humiliating is it that among 59 subjects (some introduced and inducted even after Physical Education) in the educational curriculum, the Lecturers of all these subjects, except Physical Education have same pay and grade despite the fact that Teachers and Masters of both the Departments are at par as far as their pay and grade are concerned.
In-spite of the fact that the concerned authorities have, many a times, admitted that it has been a typing error, the Grade of Physical Education Lecturers is yet to be cleared,” said an Officer of the Department on the condition of anonymity.
He said as per SRO 225 dated 18-08-2005 of the Finance Department, all the subject Lecturers have been placed in the Pay Scale of 9300-34800 Plus Grade Pay 5400 (revised). However, the Physical Education Lecturers are the only exception.
“Though the Physical Education Lecturers have been asked to draw the salary at par with the Pay Scale of other Lecturers as per the Court directions, but their Grade is yet to be officially cleared by the Finance Department despite the fact that its clearance would hardly have much effect on Government Exchequer,” said the General Secretary of the Physical Education Lecturers’ Forum while expressing anguish over the delay by the concerned authorities in removing their pay anomaly/disparity.
Sources said that on the one hand, the Education Department is preparing seniority lists of Lecturers every now and then and confirming the same, while, on the other hand, the Department of Youth Services and Sports, was yet to release a seniority list of just 100 Physical Education Lecturers (apart from one seniority list framed by the Department and released and published in Newspapers in 2016 which, however, is gathering dust despite a lapse of around 13 years after their promotion in April,2008.
“It has been observed that the fake degree holders are ruling the roost while the deserving and eligible candidates are biting the dust in the scheme of things of the Department of Youth Services and Sports because the Department after holding the verification and scruitinisation of documents more than five times, has failed to take a concrete decision on the future of the deserving employees because the fake degree holders manage heavy political intervention to serve their cause,” said a responsible retired officer of DYSS.
He said the enquiry and scruitinizing committee constituted by the Department had submitted its report about both eligible and fake candidates way back in 2010-11, after which the Court had also directed the Department to initiate the process for regularisation and promotion of eligible candidates. However, the Department hardly bothered to do so, adding that a tentative seniority list of PELs was framed by the Department in 2016 but due to heavy political interference and involvement of favouritism and even nepotism, the list was put into the dustbin to leave deserving candidates into the troubling waters.
“How is it justified to absorb one-year Post Graduate degree holders in the Department when every Post Graduate degree is of 2 years? Why Govt is using different yardsticks for different candidates is a million dollar question?,” lamented the officer.
Sources further revealed that the Department had scrutinized and verified the documents of Lecturers more than five times since their promotion, but, for unknown reasons, is still not in a position to prepare the seniority list for their confirmation, adding that the Committee framed by the Department, way back, to scrutinize the documents of Post Graduates, hardly comprised of any member having Post Graduate degree.
“How can you justify fair preparation of the seniority list of the Physical Education Lecturers (Post Graduates) by the members who themselves are not Post Graduates. For that matter, constitution of Committee by the Department to scrutinize the documents of Post Graduates was simply meaningless,” said President of J&K Physical Education Lecturers Forum.
He said how strange is it that Physical Education Lecturers are yet to be placed in the pay and grade of all other Lecturers, despite the presence of SRO 225 dated 18-08-2005.
He further said that Physical Education Lecturers serve a twin purpose of functioning as Subject Teachers and initiating sports and other allied events in schools and at the Departmental level, adding that PELs deserve a better deal.
However, the decision of postponement of the Pay Anomaly Committee meeting on January 4, 2020, has once again shattered the hopes of hapless Physical Education Lecturers (PELs), who are desperately waiting in the wings for the removal of their pay anomaly and their regularisation.
According to reliable sources, Advisor to the Lieutenant Governor, Farooq Khan, who holds the charge of Youth Services and Sports Department, in a recent meeting, has served strict directions to the concerned authorities with regard to solving the long pending issues of the PELs at an earliest.
“‘We have full faith in dynamism, energy and capability of Lieutenant Governor J&K, Manoj Sinha in running the affairs of the Union Territory smoothly and successfully. He has already served directions to all the concerned officers for making an end to in-charge system in various departments and removing pay anomalies of various cadres. We firmly believe that the LG takes serious note of the issues of PELs and orders an enquiry as to why this stagnation and who are the culprits. Why are the deserving candidates made to pay for the wrong doings of fake ones,” said the General Secretary of Physical Education Lecturers Forum while expressing anonymity.
Top physical educationists and experts believe that the best way to tackle the long pending issue of regularisation is to confirm the tentative seniority list of 2016 lying with the Department, while the removal of pay anomaly they reckon is hardly a problem for the Government, because the PELs are the only Lecturers with different grade despite the presence of SRO-225 dated 18-08-2005.