Thursday, December 27, 2007

CIRCULAR - 2

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CIRCULAR-2/07

AICEIA affiliated to the Confederation

Our Association has been granted affiliation by the Confederation of Central Government Employees and Workers in the National Executive Meeting held at New Delhi on 6.2.07. A copy of the letter from the Secretary General, Confederation of C.G. Employees and Workers formally granting us the affiliation is enclosed for your records. With this, we become the second organization representing the employees in CBEC to get affiliated to the Confederation. The Sepoy’s Federation is the other organization which has already been affiliated.

We can now be proud to belong to an organization representing the entirety of C.G employees of the country barring only the Railways and Defence.

All the Circles and Branches are requested to contact the office bearers of the Co-ordination Committee of C.G Employees at their local levels and actively participate in all the calls and Programmes of the Confederation in future. They may also make necessary subscription at the local level apart from the annual subscription that the AICEIA will be making to the Confederation. The Circles of AICEIA may subscribe to the State C-O-Cs. At the state headquarters where Circles are not available, the Branches located at the respective State H.Q may co-ordinate with the C-o-C and keep the other Branches of AICEIA informed about the developments at the C.G employees front from time to time. All Branches may subscribe to the District level C-O-Cs.

Meeting of the National Executive of the Confederation

The Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General of AICEIA attended the National Executive of the Confederation at New Delhi on 6.2.07. The President of the Confederation, Com. S.K.Vyas, Presided and Com. K.K.N.Kutty, Secretary General of the Confederation placed the reports.

The strike action of 14.12.06 was reviewed. The discussions in respect of the various arbitration awards pending with the Government and on which discussions were held with the representatives of the Government were narrated and present position of each issue reported. The submissions made before the 6TH CPC and the oral submissions in respect of Interim relief were reported.

The National Executive has required all the affiliates to prepare demands charter and chalk out Programmes of action under intimation to the Confederation in respect of all issues threatening the respective Departments consequent on the Neo economic policies of the Government, so that the issues can be collectively agitated against.
Accordingly, from our Association, the following issues have been sponsored:
1) Stop Outsourcing/ contractorisation/downsizing.
2) Scrap the existing LTU and stop formation of new LTUs.
3) Stop unnecessary expenditure on advertisements and concentrate on enforcement of economic laws.
4) Give effect to the revised pay for Inspectors of Central Excise from 1.1.96.
5) Stop discrimination between Promotees and DRs in the ACP scheme and permit anomaly claims of seniors when juniors draw higher scale of pay.
6) Provide infrastructure in terms of work place, equipments etc. in the field for executive work.
7) Grant Local Travel Expenses for Inspectors on par with Inspectors of Income Tax.
8) Grant Rummaging allowance for Officials posted in Customs area on par with the Officials of Customs.
9) Revise the ratio of promotions from Superintendents of Central Excise to Group ‘A’ as per the existing strength in Central Excise and Customs.
10) Create new posts of Assistant Commissioners for functional requirements.
11) Strengthen Audit and Preventive wings in Central Excise and Customs and Audit and survey in Service Tax.
12) Abolish Control Room and Uniform for Central Excise and Service Tax.
13) Grant adequate uniform allowance for three sets of uniform for Customs work.
14) Notify the duty list of Inspectors of Central Excise.

15) Provide necessary training and incentives to staff to enable Computerisation of the department in a full-fledged manner.
16) Conduct Cadre Review immediately in CBEC.
17) Declare Inspectors of Central Excise as Group ‘B’ Non- Gazetted as required by the CCS(CCA) Rules.
18) Grant recognition for AICEIA immediately.

The Confederation is to notify the Government in respect of the charter of demands.

News related to the 6th CPC

Oral Evidence on I.R by the Confederation:

The Confederation was invited for tendering oral evidence on its memorandum by the CPC. Accordingly, the Confederation tendered oral evidence and strongly argued for immediate recommendation for interim relief. The second round of oral hearing by the Confederation is to take place on 18th of April when the outcome on I.R is expected.

Oral evidence by the Co-ordination Committee of Associations and Federations in the Department of Revenue:


The C-o-C was granted oral hearing by the CPC on 15.3.07. The Joint Convenors of the C-o-C appeared and deposed before the Commission. The C-o-C argued for better scales of pay for the Revenue Department as a whole in the light of various expert committee recommendations. In respect of pay scales of Inspectors of Central Excise, Customs and Income Tax, when the Commission asked as to whether the parity with Inspectors of CBI was only because of the name being Inspector, because the duties were found to be varying between the organizations to a large extent, the Convenors of the C-o-c replied that the pay scales were to be determined only with the level of responsibility in purview, since the actual duties would vary between individual officers in separate formations within the same department itself and that the level of responsibilities in respect of all the said categories of Inspectors in CBI and in the Revenue were similar and hence the parity established between them historically should not be disturbed.

The C-o-c also pointed out to the CPC that in the Central Secretariat services, the Section Officers get a senior time scale of Rs. 8000/- on completion of 4 years on the scale of Rs.7500/-. Similar benefit was sought for the Officers in CBEC and CBDT on the scale of 7500/-. The CPC appeared to be appreciative of the demand.


Oral evidence by the AICEIA:

The CPC granted appointment for AICEIA on 16.3.07. Accordingly the Office Bearers of AICEIA along with the Joint-Convenor of C-o-C and former S.G, Com. Tirthankar Pyne, appeared and deposed before the Commission.

We submitted that on pay and allowances and other matters concerning the entire Department of Revenue, our submissions have been made by the JCM (Staff Side), Confederation and C-o-C of Federations/Associations in the Department of Revenue. We made our submissions specifically in respect of:
1) Stagnation in the cadre of Inspectors and
2) Allowances specific for Inspectors of C.Ex.

In respect of the first point, we pointed out that the heavy stagnation (with particular emphasis on zones like Maharashtra where Inspectors with 22 years were yet to get their promotion as Superintendents) was primarily on account of non conducting of Cadre Reviews periodically (once in 5 years) and non-alteration of the ratio between the Superintendents of Central Excise, Superintendents of Customs and Appraisers for promotion to Group ‘A’ posts as per the existing strength, from 6:1:2 to 13:2:1. We also stated that more functional posts of ACs have to be created for fulfilling the actual duties in the field created on account of a variety of changes in the Central Excise and Service Tax functions. We also demanded that free convertibility be allowed between the posts of ACs and DCs for consideration of the quota for promotions. We also asked for a post- based roster for promotions to Group ‘A’ instead of the vacancy-based ratio as being followed at present. The Commission asked for a copy of the Supreme Court order in respect of the Group ‘A’ Recruitment Rules, which has been supplied. We also stressed the discrimination between the promotees and the DRs in the ACP Scheme and requested for necessary recommendations to set right the inequality. It appeared that, the AIFCEEO, Nagpur had also appeared before the Commission and confused them on this issue, as a result of which the members of the Commission were stating to us that due to the Court Ruling cited by the AIFCEEO, Nagpur, the entire ACP Scheme would have to be scrapped. We however, have been able to put the proper perspective across to control the damage. We have insisted that at least three promotions may be ensured in the career of every individual. The Commission made a careful note of all the above submissions. However, in respect of our demand for reducing the D.R quota from 50% to 25% in Group ‘A’ or to fill up 25% of the D.R. Quota by an UPSC exam from within the Departmental Officers, the Commission stated that such a recommendation could not be made because, if the D.R quota in respect of any particular post is reduced below 50% it will lose its status (as Group ‘A’).

In respect of allowances, we have submitted that Local Travel Allowances as being allowed for the Inspectors of Income Tax and Rummaging Allowance on par with the Customs personnel be granted to us. In respect of Uniform allowance we requested for proper allowances in those areas where it is required to be worn and for abolition of Uniform in those areas like Central Excise and Service Tax, where they are not worn.

Due to the sensitivity of the Revenue Department, in order to ensure that pressures do not unnecessarily interfere with enforcement of law, it was requested that the need for adoption of transparent Guidelines for Transfers may be recommended.

The Commission gave a patient hearing for more than 20 minutes and after getting clarifications on vital points of our submissions, made a careful note of the same.

Printed copies of the Memorandum submitted by us has been widely circulated. It is hoped that the material will be made use of by all Office Bearers and members.

Developments in the side lines:

The CPC is understood to be contemplating adoption of performance related pay. It is not yet clear whether this concept is for departments as a whole or for individuals. The security of job for the Government servants in terms of Article 311 of the Constitution is also sought to be quantified, so that the element would be considered as a part of the pay packet. The proposals for any modification in the pension scheme for those who joined before 1.1.04 is also under study. Separate study teams have been engaged for the said purposes.


Organisational developments

Congratulations:

AICEIA congratulates each and every member and Office Bearers of the Branches/Circles/All India, for enabling the Association to submit the DDO Certificates to the Board even in excess of the minimum required 4932, as required by the Board. Let us look forward for the formal Recognition being granted by the Board at the earliest.

State-wide agitations against LTU in TamilNadu.

State wide agitations were held in Tamil Nadu on 31.1.07 under the aegis of the Tamil Nadu Co-ordination Committee of Associations/Federations in the Department of Revenue against the starting of LTUs. As per the call of the Committee, members of the Departments of I.T, Central Excise and Customs observed a daylong dharna on 31.1.07 at Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, Trichy, Salem, Tirunelveli and Pondicherry.

The associations in the Tamil Nadu Co-ordination Committee of Associations/Federations in the Department of Revenue have passed resolutions urging the Coordinating Committee at the national level to give a call for all-India agitations against the move of the Government to bring the Large Tax Paying units under the control of an ill manned institution like the LTU thus endangering the economy of the nation. The issue had been discussed in the Convention held at Pune and a letter had been addressed by this Association to the Coordinating Committee also. We have to pursue the issue with more vigour and all Office Bearers are requested to mobilize awareness among the members against the ill effects of this move so that agitations could be successfully launched any time with the concurrence of the other organizations in the Coordinating Committee.

Annual G.B at Bhubaneshwar.

The Annual General Body Meeting of the Orissa Circle was conducted on 19.1.07 at Bhubaneshwar. The President, the Secretary General and the Joint Secretary (E) of AICEIA attended the meeting in its session and addressed the meeting and also answered various questions raised by the enthusiastic members during the open house as well as the closed door discussions. The mouthpiece of the Circle with the name ‘AHWAN’ was issued. The Commissioner, Bhubaneshwar also participated in the open house.

Inauguration of the Belgaum Branch of AICEIA.

As approved by the Convention at Pune, the new Branch of the AICEIA Belgaum Branch was formed and it was inaugurated at Belgaum on 3.2.07. The Working President, Secretary General and the Joint Secretary (S) of AICEIA attended the function and the meeting and wished all the best for the new Branch. Apart from the members of the Belgaum Branch, members from other parts of Karnataka had also been invited and they also participated and made the function a grand success. The Commissioner of Central Excise, Belgaum also participated in the function. A book let containing information related to the Association was released in the function.

Annual General Meeting of the West Bengal, Sikkim and Andaman Nicobar Circle, AICEIA.

The Annual General Meeting of the West Bengal, Sikkim and Andaman Nicobar Circle, AICEIA, was held at Kolkata on the 25th and 26th of February 2007. The President, former Secretary General and Joint-Convenor of the C-o-C of Associations and Federations in the Department of Revenue, Com. Pyne and Asst Secretary General of AICEIA participated in the proceedings. Office bearers of very many other Sister Organisations also participated in the Open Session and in the closed session a number of resolutions were passed.

Bank account of the Association.

The Association has opened a Savings Bank account with the SBI at Coimbatore. All Office Bearers of the Circles/Branches are requested to make the payment of arrears of subscription dues and cost of the printed copies of memorandum to the CPC by Demand Drafts or Cheques drawn in favour of AICEIA payable at Coimbatore. It is requested that due to the imposition of a charge of Rs. 100/- per transaction by the core banking facility, no deposits may be made using the said facility, but remittances may be made only by Cheques or Drafts.


Revised Constitution and reference book of the AICEIA.

A reference book of the AICEIA with details and addresses of All Office Bearers in the Executive Committee of the Association and the latest Constitution of the Association as adopted in the Convention held at Pune is proposed to be published for use by all Office Bearers. Any other information suggested also could be considered for inclusion. Suggestions may please be sent by e-mail early.

New Office Bearers of Branches/Circles:

Elections have been conducted in Hyderabad, Vishakapatnam, Belgaum, Raipur and Bangalore. The new Office bearers of each branch are as below:

Branch. President. Secretary.

Hyderabad: Com. D.V.S.Rama Rao Com. B. PavanKumar Reddy
(09849046969)

Vishakapatnam Com. Ramesh Kumar Com. R. Bhagavathi Rao.
(09866069195) (08912506322)

Belgaum Com. Senthil Murugan Com. Girish Desai.
(09880630296)

Raipur Com.Gopal Joshi Com. Hemant Kumar Ghosal

Bangalore C.Shivalingiah Com. Vitoba Shetty.
(09845239638)

AICEIA wishes all the above Comrades and their team all the best in their tenure. All the above Secretaries are requested to send the House addresses, personal phone numbers and e-mail ids of the President and Secretary of their respective Branch/Circle (where ever not yet sent) for communications.



News up date on creation of posts for ST and Audit:

As per current information, the proposal for creation of new posts for Service Tax and Audit as reported in the earlier circular is at present with the DOPT and is expected to go to the Cabinet after clearance there.


Yours fraternally,

(R. Manimohan)
Secretary General

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