Officials’ apathy leads to inordinate delay in making compassionate appointments

*No improvement in situation despite numerous directions
Admn Secys asked to earmark 10% posts for SRO-43 cases

Mohinder Verma

JAMMU, Nov 19: Incredible it may sound but it is a fact that officials’ apathy has not even spared those who are seeking appointments in the Government departments on the compassionate grounds and they are compelled to wait for considerable period of time to avail the benefit of the Government’s policy.
The slackness on this aspect, which otherwise should receive priority attention, is notwithstanding the fact that numerous directions about expediting the clearance of such cases are being issued after regular intervals by none else than the Chief Secretary that too in the meetings of the Committee of Secretaries.
As a humanitarian gesture, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir framed Compassionate Appointment Rules in the year 1994 and notified the same vide SRO-43. These Rules apply to the compassionate appointment of a person who is a family member of a Government employee who dies in harness other than due to militancy related action and a Government employee who dies as a result of militancy related action (or due to enemy action on the Line of Control/International Border within Jammu and Kashmir) and is not involved in militancy related activities etc.
As per the Rules, an eligible family member may be appointed against a vacancy in the lowest rank of non-gazetted service or Class-IV post having qualification as prescribed under the relevant Recruitment Rules.
Where no post is available in the office or subordinate offices of the Head of the Department, the proposal for appointment is required to be submitted to the Administrative Department concerned and where there is no post available in the Administrative Department concerned also, the case is required to be referred to the General Administration Department for appointment of the candidate in any other department.
In order to ensure timely identification of vacancies and settlement of compassionate appointment cases, the General Administration Department vide communication No.GAD/Mtg/ RB-IV/26/2018 dated January 10, 2019 advised all the departments to earmark 10% of Class-IV vacancies for settlement of compassionate appointments under SRO-43 of 1994.
Thereafter, the Chief Secretary, while chairing meetings of the Committee of Secretaries and on other occasions laid stress on timely clearance of compassionate appointment cases so that benefit of the Government policy is provided to the eligible persons without any hassle.
Moreover, he issued directions on numerous occasions about strict compliance to the communication dated January 10, 2019 so that practice of referring cases to the General Administration Department for making appointment on compassionate grounds in the departments other than the one where the deceased employee was posted, could be checked.
However, there is no end to the official apathy and this can be gauged from the latest communication of General Administration Department addressed to all the Administrative Secretaries.
“The Administrative Departments are sending compassionate appointment cases to the General Administration Department for appointment of NoKs of deceased in other departments due to non-availability of such posts in their departments or for other reasons”, reads the communication issued by Commissioner Secretary to the Government Manoj Kumar Dwivedi.
He further said that General Administration Department has been regularly seeking identification of posts from various departments but many times the response from the Administrative Departments remains lukewarm as a result of which the final settlement of such cases remains pending for considerable period of time marring the purpose of providing benefits under the policy of the Government.
Drawing the attention of all the Administrative Secretaries towards the communication dated January 10, 2019, the GAD Commissioner Secretary has once again impressed upon them to adhere to the advisory and ensure earmarking of 10% Class-IV vacancies for settlement of compassionate appointment cases and to promptly identify the posts as and when the requisition is made by the General Administration Department.
“It is really a matter of serious concern that officials’ apathy has not even spared the compassionate appointment cases which otherwise should receive priority attention especially in the light of the fact that family members of Government employees die in harness need immediate assistance for their survival”, sources said and hoped that in future there would be strict compliance to the directions and GAD is not compelled further to reiterate the directions.