Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Posted by Secretary General on 4/06/2011 07:35:00 AM with No comments

Delhi Diary
5th April, 2011
It was an eventful day for us in the Capital today. The first important assignment was that we met the Chairman, CBEC and handed over copies of earlier representations submitted earlier regarding the AICEIA’s views on the in-situ promotion proposals presently under consideration of the Board; the procedure to be followed for conducting DPC’s for promotion from Inspector to Superintendent, especially in the wake of DOP&T’s OM dated 11.03.2011 on this subject; and our demand to lift the ban on ICT’s similar to the one being followed in CBDT. All these issues were discussed at length with the Chairman, and it was conveyed to him that so many matters including these were not being resolved despite repeated representations by us, and if the  Department  fails to redress our grievances, we have no option but to resort to a programme of   agitation very soon in a coordinated manner with all other Associations of Central Excise and Customs. The Chairman informed us that all these matters are being actively worked upon in the Board, and that he is in regular contact with all wings and agencies concerned, both within and outside the Board, especially  those  involved in the cadre-restrucuring exercise, and outstanding issues are expected to be adequately addressed very soon. He   carefully went through our representations and immediately called for  action-taken / current status reports  on the same from the concerned Board Officials.  
Thereafter, we called on the Member (P&V) and impressed upon her too the anguish of the Association on the interminable delays that are being encountered in the resolution of the acute problems being faced by the cadre, and that the members are running out of patience and that we are forced to embark on a programme of agitation with all other Associations of Groups B and C personnel of  Excise and Customs. The Member’s attention was invited to all the long-pending demands of the Association, and the divergent practices being followed in different zones in conducting DPC’s for promotion from Inspector to Superintendent. It was assured by her that she will  be taking up these matters on priority.

Following this the meeting of the Anomalies Committee of the Department of Revenue  chaired by the Special Secretary (Revenue) was held, in which we along with representatives of all recognised  Staff Federations / Associations  under the CBDT/CBEC/Deptt. of Economic Affairs/ Deptt. of Expenditure participated . Nothing much to write home about this meeting, since it was ruled that most of the points sponsored by the participants from the Staff side, though having considerable merit, could not be deliberated upon   since they, being beyond the scope of “Anomaly” as defined for the purpose by DOPT,  lay outside the purview of the  Committee.  The one silver lining, however, was that the Chairman of the Committee, Shri K. Jose Cyriac  Special Secretary (Revenue), conceded the insistent demand of the Staff side, espoused very forcefully especially by the Secretary General of the Confederation of Central Government Employees and Workers Com. K K N Kutty, that the long-defunct Departmental Council be revived. It was assured by the official side that within the next three months a meeting of Departmental Council would be convened. This is a significant step forward, and would provide an effective institutionalised mechanism to highlight our problems and demands.
Then we continued with the ongoing process of persuasion with various sections of the Board dealing with the different administrative/ establishment/pay-related issues concerning our cadre. To summarise the information that we could collect from the concerned quarters :- in the matter relating to stepping up of pay of a senior drawing pay less than a  junior DR Inspector or promotee Inspector promoted after 1.1.2006 but before 1.1.2008 who has opted for revised pay structure,  some definite progress is there, and a draft clarification on the lines of that issued by CBDT has been prepared  and the same is expected to be issued soon; the grant of MACP to promotee Inspectors without counting promotion from UDC to TA , as also in the related issue of Inspectors promoted from the cadre of stenographers, the matter is moving in a positive direction, albeit slowly. We have earnestly requested the concerned officials to speed up the matter. It was also learnt that on the ICT issue, the Board is favourably disposed towards the demand for lifting the ban, and the relevant file is moving fast.     
The final event of the day was a meeting in the evening at the Central Revenue Building in New Delhi participated by the All India leadership of almost all the Associations of Central Excise and Customs of this country, which perhaps, this Department has never  witnessed earlier. For two hours all the burning issues were discussed and analysed by the representatives of the Superintendents, Inspectors, Ministerial Officers, and the Group C Executives of Central Excise, and the Group C Executive and Ministerial Officers of Customs. A consensus was finally arrived at that a common phased programme of agitation would be announced very shortly which would begin with Dharna at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi by representatives of  all the said Associations (tentatively on 20th April 2011) and simultaneous lunch-hour protest demonstrations at all Hqrs offices on that day. This is intended to coincide with and show our solidarity with the protest programme called for on that day by the Confederation of Central Government Employees and Workers, which includes such demands as raising the rate of interst on GPF deposits, and scrapping of the highly anti-employee PERFDA. It was broadly agreed upon that all agitational programmes would be called identically by all the concerned Associations, with each Association having their own independent Charters of Demands. Also agreed upon was that  each constituent Association would insist that the Board/Ministry hold discussions jointly with all recognized Associations concerned.