Thursday, June 04, 2009

Babus under check: File notings to be in public domain; officials may face jail term

THE government officials need to be much more careful in file notings as those are already in public scrutiny under the RTI. Central Information Commission chief Wajahat Habibullah’s summoning of DoPT joint secretary S K Sarkar and deputy secretary Anuradha Chagti on June 17 to explain why they should not be prosecuted under RTI provisions, is a case in point. According to reports in a leading newspaper, the erring officials could also face a year in jail. In fact, DoPT refused to correct the information in its website that file notings were not part of information that could be disclosed under the RTI. The Supreme Court has already accepted the CIC’s ruling that file notings were not exempt from disclosure, said the media reports. If CIC becomes aggressive, as this case has demonstrated, the loopholes of the RTI may soon be plugged, leading to the disclosure of many facts which officers would not have like to be on public domain.

Govt’s Second Innings Bonanza: Take casual leave during LTC, encash 10 days of earn leaves Here’s a good piece of news for all government employees including the officers. Government servants will now be allowed to encash earned leave upto 10 days at the time of availing Leave Travel Concession (LTC) even if they don’t take leaves for a similar number of days, a DoPT circular dated June 3, 2009, clarified. That means even if an employee takes just four days off to avail of the LTC, that too casual leaves, he may claim encashment of 10 days of leaves. Earlier, the encashment was possible subject to the condition that earned leave of at least an equivalent duration is also availed of by the Government servants simultaneously. The DoPT received a number of references from various ministries to waive this condition citing practical problems faced by them as the facility of LTC was also admissible while availing Casual Leave, the circular further said. “The matter has been examined in this Department in consultation with the Ministry of Finance and it has now been decided to permit Government servants encashment of earned leave upto 10 days at the time of availing LTC without any linkage to the number of days and the nature of leave availed while proceeding on LTC,” the clarification said.

1 comment:

  1. Udoy Bhaskar BorahJune 4, 2009 at 3:47 PM

    Indian bureaucracy has been ranked the least efficient by a business survey of 12 Asian economies. According to the survey, working with Indian civil servants is a "slow and painful" process (courtesy: TOI/4 June 2009). What is your take on this?