51 officials granted study leave without approval

CAT reprimands YSS

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, Jan 25: The Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) has rapped the department of Youth Services and Sports (YSS) on allowing its employees for higher studies of at least 51 officials without having any approval from the competent authority for sanctioning study leave in their favour.
The Division Bench of Anand Mathur and D S Mishra has quashed the order of the YSS whereby the department allowed its various employees for pursuing higher studies without any approval from the competent authority.
The bench after having perusal of the order under challenge said by issuing the impugned order, the authorities have overlooked the gross indiscipline on the part of its employees in pursuing the higher studies.
The bench said that they were supposed to be on duty and accepted their salaries during this period and in pursuing higher studies knowing fully well that they do not have approval of the competent authority for sanction of study leave.
“The inconsistent stand taken by the respondent-department in dealing with similar cases is also not appreciated. The impugned order is obviously a cover up of the indiscipline on the part of the private respondents and is in fact a boon being offered to them in terms of seniority and other service benefits which would accrue on account of the impugned order”, reads the judgment.
The CAT concluded by quashing and setting aside the impugned order with the direction to the Commissioner Secretary YSS to ensure that the seniority of the applicants and others is prepared and finalized strictly as per rules and regulations on the subject, within a period of three months from the date of receipt of a certified copy of this order.
The aggrieved employees submitted that as per the Order, the Government passed an order regarding adjustment of Lecturers in Physical Education and sanction was accorded to the placement of 192 posts of Physical Education Lecturers in the higher secondary schools and the department had annexed the list of selected candidates but the private respondents have wrongly mentioned this selection list as seniority list.
They submit that ignoring the guidelines of the RDA, the department issued Government order No. 46-Edu (YSS) of 2019 dated 09.07.2019 that ex post facto sanction is accorded to the grant of promotion in favor of the Physical Education Teachers and Physical Education Masters (PET/PEM) for pursuing higher qualification in relaxation of Rule 73 of Jammu and Kashmir Civil Services Leave Rules 1975, recovery of salary amount from PETs and PEMs for that period.
They pursued higher studies without proper permission. Even after issuance of the impugned order, there is no clarity provided by the respondent department as to on which grounds or through which mechanism will the officials who possess valid certificates and degrees be promoted to the next higher post on substantial basis. There is no seniority list in the department except the one circulated by the department in 2016.
The Committee formulated for the omission and commission found a procedural lapse by the officers who had granted permission in respect of 51 officials. These officials have also drawn their salaries which were not due to them as per the study leave rules prevalent at that time.