Govt to relax rules to end adhocism at top level in bureaucracy

IAS officers without NFSG to be considered for Secy level posts
Major reshuffle on cards in next SAC meeting
Mohinder Verma
JAMMU, May 22: In order to bring an end to the adhocism at the top level in the State bureaucracy, the Government has made up its mind to relax rules in consultation with the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), Government of India, and consider Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers having less than 13 years of service and Super Time Scale officers of Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Service (KAS) for the Secretary to Government level posts.
EXCELSIOR on March 14, 2019 had exclusively highlighted that Governor’s administration is facing peculiar situation in filling vacant posts of the Administrative Secretaries of various departments and because of dearth of eligible officers majority of these posts are being manned through adhoc arrangements.
It was also mentioned in the report that the situation will become more complex as in the next few months more IAS officers are going to attain the age of superannuation as a result of which functioning of the departments would suffer immensely.
Highly placed sources told EXCELSIOR that Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam held detailed discussion with the Governor Satya Pal Malik and all the four Advisors-K Vijay Kumar, Khurshid Ahmed Ganai, K Skandan and K K Sharma on the prevailing crisis this morning.
He informed the Governor that although the functioning of several departments is being managed through adhoc arrangements and officers who have been assigned the additional charge are trying their level best to do justice with all the departments under their charge but most of the times they find it difficult to dispose of the files expeditiously and pay timely attention on the vital issues, sources informed.
The Chief Secretary further informed the Governor and Advisors that there are certain departments where posts of Administrative Secretaries cannot be kept vacant for long time keeping in view their importance.
After thorough discussion, the need of relaxing rules governing the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers in consultation with Department of Personnel and Training, Government of India, to overcome the prevailing crisis was felt and it was decided that a detailed proposal in this regard would be considered by the State Administrative Council (SAC) in its next meeting, sources disclosed.
As per the rules, an IAS officer becomes eligible for holding the post of Secretary to Government on the completion of 13 years of service when the officer also gets Non-Functional Selection Grade. The IAS officers who completed 13 years of service early this year are already holding the posts of Secretary to Government or equivalent rank.
“Now, the Government will consider those IAS officers, who have yet not completed 13 years of service, for the Secretary to Government level posts in relaxation of rules so that prevailing crisis is checked up to large extent”, sources said while disclosing that two-three IAS officers who have yet not completed 13 years of service are already holding the posts of Secretary to Government.
Moreover, Super Time Scale KAS officers will also be considered for the Secretary to Government level posts, sources said, adding “this step will also bring an end to the general complaint of the KAS officers fraternity that they are being denied of their due share in the top level bureaucracy”.
In respect of Indian Police Service (IPS) officers, the Government has already granted this relaxation which is why 2007 batch IPS officers are currently holding the posts of DIG.
“There will be massive reshuffle in the bureaucracy soon after the clearance of the proposal with regard to posting of officers on Secretary level posts in relaxation of rules by the State Administrative Council in its next meeting”, sources informed.
About the reasons behind dearth of eligible officers for the Secretary to Government level posts, sources said that before 2006 regular recruitment of IAS officers in respect of J&K cadre was very less and the same picked up momentum only after 2009. Moreover, during the period between 1996 and 2006, only few IAS officers made it to the J&K cadre and during 1996, 1998 and 2000, no IAS officer was allotted J&K cadre.
Similarly, there was no batch of Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Services (KAS) during the period between 1984 and 1999, which is why there is a crisis of inducted KAS officers as well.