A body representing the Central Secretariat Service (CSS) officers has written to the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) that despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement to fill around 10 lakh Central government vacancies by end of 2023, around 45% posts of Section Officers of CSS are lying vacant as many officers have not be promoted since 2013.
The DoPT is the nodal ministry to fill all vacant positions till 2023.
On October 22, Mr. Modi launched the ‘Rozgar Mela’ (recruitment drive) for 10 lakh Central government jobs via video conferencing where appointment letters were handed over to 75,000 newly inducted appointees inducted in the first tranche.
The Prime Minister had announced in June that the existing 10 lakh vacancies in Central government departments will be filled in mission mode till 2023, ahead of the 2024 general elections.
The CSS Forum said that 1,624 posts are lying vacant in Section Officer (SO) Grade comprising 45% of sanctioned strength of 3,600.
It said that SO is a key post in Secretariat administration as they are responsible for distribution of work among other officials, coordination of work and timely issuance of letters and other communication.
CSS Forum stated that DoPT is not considering the ad-hoc promotions of officials inducted in 2013 on the ground of non-finalisation of selection list due to court cases. However, DoPT’s guidelines on promotion states that in case of service matters pending in courts, ad-hoc promotions can be made to meet the functional requirements of government.
The Forum wrote: “Even after explaining the above factual position to senior officers in DoPT, Department is not considering the ad-hoc promotion of Assistant Section Officers (ASOs) due to which resentment and frustration is at peak among the more than thousand ASOs. These senior most ASOs of CSS are now highly agitated and are demanding immediate ad-hoc promotion to save their monthly financial loss and to reduce their mental agony”.
The letter added, “It is understood that on directions of PM Narendra Modi in June 2022 for mission mode recruitment of 10 lakh people, DoPT wrote to all Ministries and departments to take action for filling up vacancies through promotion or examination at the earliest. However, it is ironic that under DoPT more than 1,600 posts of Section Officers are lying vacant for which provisions are already available for promotion. These promotions could have created vacancies in feeder grade and hence be a necessary step in achieving the target of 10 lakh recruitment as directed by the Prime Minister.”