Knowing about the antecedents of employees


There is absolutely no doubt or any type of qualms about a new employee being appointed only after proper verification of one’s character, integrity and the antecedents. However, the question is as to who should do it – an employee seeking employment or the Government as the employer. Should it be done only after one was appointed, joined one’s duties but would not be paid the salary till the time proper verification by the police, the CID or whatever authorised agency submitted the ‘NOC’ certificate to the employer. We do not feel quite convinced about the prevalence of the practice, if any, of issuing conditional appointment letter to the selected candidates after receipt of an attested form accompanied by an undertaking on a sworn affidavit that salary will be paid only after receipt of the character and antecedents verification certificate. However, even if this practice was made obligatory on each and every department in respect of recruitments and paying salaries, how come there being instances where employees with unsatisfactory and doubtful antecedents or with a criminal record having not only made it to the Government job but having been paid salaries and allowances too from the public exchequer? In other words, instructions of such a sensitive nature are in most of the cases treated as optional. Normally in such cases, such unwarranted payment of salaries, if not termed as unauthorised due to technical reasons et-al, should have been recovered from such drawing and disbursing authorities who breached instructions in this regard but since the procedures and regulations in this respect are such that exit routes to even wilfully deviate can be and have been found, a pragmatic approach is needed to be adopted in so far as enforcement of the existing guidelines to be ensured in letter and spirit is concerned. There are rules and instructions made in 1997 which inter-alia mean proper verification. However, in the original instructions and later through amendments, the crux remains the same and that is to have an employee in Government service who at least had no criminal background in the past or during the period seeking employment was not engaged in any unlawful activities or involved in acts prejudicial to the interests of the intending department to get engaged with as an employee or to the UT and the country. We feel, during the course of the exercise of recruitment and those found eligible and having cleared mandatory tests etc and having made it to the selection list, the list can be sent in confidence to the Criminal Investigation Department for making discreet enquiries about the integrity, character and antecedents of the selected candidates and prospective employees which must be received by the appointing authority to enable it to issue appointment orders. Since every appointment is deemed to be temporary or on probation for a few months or a year, foolproof verification can be done but salaries need not to be withheld. Only when a full fledged report on the standard format devised under the simplified mechanism, is received from the CID in confirmation of its earlier ‘at random’ report and there being a sworn affidavit too with the employer, this issue can be deemed to have been fully addressed. Needless to add, it is not only at the time of seeking employment that an employee should be proved having impeccable honesty, integrity, good character and satisfactory antecedents but even during the entire length of service as at any time there being slightest involvement in any criminal case, prima facie, an employee could be suspended and even terminated. It is therefore absolutely important for the departments and their Heads to strictly follow and adhere to the guidelines of having mandatory CID verification of its new entrants as employees as also for the employees themselves to remain strictly within the realms of the provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Civil Services Rules and instructions. A person with a criminal record or involved in a criminal case but not punished getting somehow employed in a Government department