Copy of the letter addressed to Chief PMG, Orissa is reproduced below for information of members.
Mrs. Hilda Abraham
Chief Postmaster General
The Circle Working Committee of the All India Association of IPs and ASPs, Orissa Circle Branch met at Bhubaneswar on 01.08.2010 with the Circle President of the Association in Chair.
Among other things, the CWC observed the following:
That the Govt. has denied the much awaited upgraded GP of Rs. 4600/- to IPs while the analogous posts in other Departments/Ministries of Govt. of India have already got it since November 2010 having retrospective effect from 01.01.2006. The Department did not have whole-hearted approach to allow the benefit to IPs on par with analogous posts in CBDT/CBEC and other Ministries/Departments of Govt. of India as it evident from the stand taken in OA No.381/2010 in the Hon’ble CAT, Ernakulam Bench. Without getting the proposal approved in the Postal Services Board it was submitted to MOF which did not accept it. The Association even agreed to merger of IP and ASP cadres for facilitating grant of GP of `4600/- to IP cadre. But the Department’s response was cool. This situation prompted two enthusiastic IP line officials in Kerala Circle to file an OA before the Hon’ble CAT, Ernakulam Bench. It was hoped that the Dept would facilitate upgradation of GP so that IPs will be relieved of the anxiety and anguish over the injustice meted out to them. Instead, the Department rather played spoilsport by opposing the OA tooth and nail. On the top of it, in a sort of accusation, the Department has mentioned that the IPs have mislead the Hon’ble CAT with their unreasonable demand. After implementation of MACPS, the IPs are now getting GP which is equal to that of Overseers of Mails. An IP with Grade Pay of Rs.4200 is awaiting at least 27 years in normal course to get PS Gr.B status to reach a GP of Rs.4800. PAs getting 3rd MACP are now equal in Grade Pay with ASPs. The distinction of IP line officials has thus got diluted but the Department still pleads that IPs are not entitled to GP of Rs.4600. On the other hand the work pressure continues to mount on the IP line officials.
The much needed Clerical and Gr.D (now multi-skilled) assistance is denied to IPs and ASPs in Sub-Divisions. The recommendation of R S Natarajamurti Committee to post Asst. Inspectors in Sub-Divisions to assist the IPs is gathering dust without any action being contemplated by the Govt. on such recommendation. While the Department has already instituted a Committee to undertake cadre review of Gr.C staff, the Department has not done any such thing in respect of IP line officials for which there has been no cadre review since 1981.
All these are narrated to mention the real situation in respect of IP cadre officials. Though these issues have no direct solution at the level of Circle administration, the Association thought it imperative to keep the policy makers of the Department informed through the channels of your august office which has a major role in running the administration of the Department.
While the IP line officials are suffering from the ordeal of injustice on GP issue, the Circle Administration has chosen to aggravate the situation by resorting to some repressive measures in respect of a number of IP line officials. The following are some examples:
1. Sri D P Dash who was initially granted CL with headquarter-leaving permission became ill and submitted application for EL supported by medical certificate. On resumption of his duty he was first orally abused for remaining on leave and then asked to explain in writing. He mentioned his illness (supported by medical certificate) as the reason for his absence for which application for leave on medical ground was submitted by him in time. The points mentioned in his explanation are completely overlooked and his entire leave period which is supported by medical certificate has been ordered to be treated as die- non. This kind of treatment is never heard of before in the history of IP line officials in the Circle. Sri Dash is awaiting justice by filing appeal.
2. Sri Khageswar Mallick, ASP(TO) suffering from heart ailments was admitted to Aditya Care Hospital on 05.4.2010. He was not in a position to communicate. His wife informed the Circle Administration about his illness through e-mail on 05.04.2010 itself. This was followed by the written application for leave sent through messenger. Phonic information about his absence from duty was received by the Group Officer. On joining after a week Sri Mallick submitted his proforma leave application supported by medical certificate. But Sri Mallick was asked to explain his ‘unauthorised absence’. Sri Mallick explained everything in detail. But his submissions were not accepted and he was warned in writing for not taking prior approval for absenting himself. Even when the official was suffering, that too from a major health problem supported by proof of medical tests, he was not spared of the written warning. It is still not understood how an official can forecast his admission to hospital in emergency and seek prior approval for leave in such cases.
3. In yet another incident Sri Mallick has been issued with written warning for not taking steps to trace out Mobile Internet Instrument during the period in which he was away from his duty for treatment of his heart-related ailments. He submitted in his explanation that after he returned from leave he traced the instrument out when he was asked to do so. But his submissions were ignored and he was issued with a written warning casting aspersions on his integrity.
4. Sri K P Parida, who is now officiating in PS Gr. B cadre is known for his integrity and absolute loyalty to the administration having won Dak Sewa Award to his credit. But he was branded as a notorious element and relieved from his assignment of AD (Staff) on the very date of communication of transfer orders. Further he was forced to join in his new place of posting at Bhadrak without being allowed the chance to avail his normal transit time.
5. Smt. Arunabala Mohanty was given ad hoc promotion to officiate in the post of ASP (HQ) of Bhubaneswar Division for 11 months. But to avoid expenditure on TA she was reverted to IP cadre within two months of her officiating as ASP, even though vacancy in ASP post was available in other station [namely, the post of ASP (OD) in Cuttack City Divn] to accommodate another reverted ASP. Smt. Mohanty has now refused the officiating offer to ASP cadre having suffered from the ignominy of reversion without her fault.
6. Some ASPs now officiating in PS Gr. B cadre have been issued with recorded warning for no fault of theirs. Some outsiders recruited as PAs could not join induction training due to want of sufficient time to proceed to training centres. No time was left with the Divisional Heads to make alternative arrangements. But the genuine problems cited in the explanations were ignored.
7. As a rule Group Officers are competent to grant CL to IPs and ASPs working under them. Now, Group Officers are no more empowered to grant CL to IPs and ASPs. CL is taken in exigency and emergency. But the IPs and ASPs are asked to wait till grant of CL is formally approved by DPS / Chief PMG in file. IPs/ASPs are made to wait till the file (put up in another case of IP/ASP applying CL) returns to the Section. Submission of application on the date prior to date of CL is insisted upon without taking into consideration the emergent circumstances in which CL is applied for.
8. The Administration does not lose any time while issuing warning and chargesheets to IP line officials. But welfare measures and encouragement take the backseat. Sri Tarini Ch. Padhi, IP Aska Division was served with communication dated 17.12.2008 to receive Dak Sewa Award for the year 2007. Two years have passed by in the meanwhile. But there is no initiative to give away the award though the association had raised the point through written communication on 13.10.2009 (copy enclosed vide Annexure-I). The fate of Dak Sewa Award in the Circle for the years 2008 and 2009 is also not known.
9. Recently posting orders for two lady IP officials have been issued. They are the surplus qualified candidates IP Exam 2008 who were supposed to work outside home Circle. But as a special case, Directorate allotted them to home Circle so that they could overcome their domestic problem. But they have been shown no mercy in their home Circle and have been posted to places where they will have no option but to remain separated from family. This runs counter to the guidelines issued recently by Govt. of India, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions O M bearing F.NO.28034/9/2009-Estt.(A) dated 30.09.2009 (copy vide Annexure-II), which has the spirit of encouraging women’s representation in all cadres of Govt. Service. There are a number of vacancies to accommodate them in nearby places but their posting to inconvenient places has made one candidate to represent not to take up the IP job. The result of IP Exam 2009 is awaited shortly which could have taken care of the vacancies where the lady officials are posted now. But in the name of administrative needs, their genuine domestic problem was overlooked. While the vacancy in IP cadre is growing such instance will only help increase the vacancy further.
10. As on now Orissa Circle has around 50 physical vacancies in IP cadre posts. The existing IPs are taking extra burden of the work of vacant posts without extra remuneration. The request of the Association made in writing on 13.10.2009 (vide Annexure-III) to retain the surplus qualified candidates of IP Exam 2008 of Orissa in the home Circle was ignored without taking up the matter with Directorate. Though it is leant that your goodself has now taken initiative to get the surplus candidates of Orissa allotted to home Circle, it is too late. Some IP line officials being put to unbearable work pressure of additional posts for indefinite period have come up with the thought of raising human right issues.
The aforesaid instances are just indicative and not exhaustive. There are several other instances which are not mentioned here. It is observed that the actions as in the case of Sri K Mallick and Sri D P Dash, to cite examples, were not warranted by administrative expediency but were followed as repressive measure in the name of administrative discipline. The Association has observed that the Circle Administration is taking a posture towards IP cadre which is seemingly harsh, rigid, unhelpful and insensitive. It is also apparent that the Circle Administration is following a deliberate method to spoil whatever little career prospect is available to the IP line officials. It is to be seen how far these action will help to motivate the IP line officials who are continuing in a demotivated state due to discrimination on GP issue.
The IP line officials are known for their loyalty to the Department and are working hard beyond their normal working hours to implement the plan and policies of the Department. They are always at the service of the senior officers to help carry out day to day duties. In Sub-Divisions the IP line Officials discharging their duties braving many adverse situations. But the Association has observed that the loyalty of the IP line officials are taken for granted. The Department has now paid back the loyalty by vehemently opposing the upgradation proposal of GP of IPs while the news of granting upgrdation to several cadres in different ministries of the Govt of India, beyond 6CPC recommendations is now a regular feature.
As per the decision in the CWC meeting, I wish to bring the aforesaid instances to your kind notice with the hope that your goodself will look into these aspects dispassionately and would like to take appropriate measures to restore confidence of the IP line officials in the Circle administration so that the restiveness which is continuing now does not grow to a situation which will bound to have a bearing on their performance and output in coming days.
B B Mohanty
Encl: As above