Monday, August 2, 2010

Record Note of discussion

Dear Comrades
 
Inadvertently, one page was left out in the previous posting of "record note of discussion with dai".
Sorry for the mistake.
 
A corrected version is posted below
 
M. S. Raja
Secretary General

RECORD NOTE OF DISCUSSIONS

MINUTES OF THE AGENDA MEETING HELD ON 24.06.2010 AT 4.30 P.M. BY THE DEPUTY COMPTROLLER AND AUDITOR GENERAL WITH THE OFFICE BEARERS OF THE ALL INDIA AUDIT AND ACCOUNTS ASSOCIATION

OPENING ADDRESS

1. An agenda meeting was held by the Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General with the office bearers of the All India Audit and Accounts Association on 24.06.2010 at 4.30 P.M. in Room No. 510. List of the participants, who attended the meeting, is at Annexure A.

2. At the outset, the Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General welcomed the representatives of the All India Audit and Accounts Association and hoped that as both the Staff and the Official sides had a common objective viz~ staff welfare, the ensuing deliberations would be fruitful and constructive and will be conducive to disciplined working which is necessary for any organisation.

3. Discussions commenced thereafter on the agenda items.

ANNEXURE A

List of participants in the meeting held by Dy Comptroller & Auditor General with Office-bearers of All India Audit & Accounts Association on 24.06.2010 at 4.30 P.M.

Dr. A. K. Banerjee

Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General

Ms. Annie G Mathew

Principal Director (Staff)

Shri Saurabh Narain

Asstt. Comptroller & Auditor General (N)

Shri M. L. Tamrakar

Admn. Officer (JCM)

Shri M. S. Raja

Secretary General (of the federation)

Shri M. Duraipandian

President (of the federation)

Shri V. Nageshwara Rao

Addl. Secretary General (of the federation)

Shri Subhash Chandra Pandey

Vice-President (of the federation)

Shri G. K. Gohain

Vice-President (of the federation)

 

 

Demand No.: 1. Implementation of the CCS (RSA) Rules in an impartial and judicious manner; proposal for constitutional amendments.

Explanation:

The CCS (RSA) Rules, 1993 have been implemented deviating from the original notification and subsequent rules framed by the Govt. of India i.e. from departmental Associations, office wise Associations have been recognized.

We submit that the recognition may please be granted at Departmental level.

Subsequent to this, the process for recognition of the federations was initiated based on the DOPT's OM dated 3rd July, 2002. In IA&AD, the process was completed and recognition was granted to Federations in June, 2004.

Amendment to the Constitution of the AIAAA proposed by the Administration:

Now this Association (Federation) and its affiliated Associations are asked to amend their respective Constitutions-on quorum, and on the term of the office bearers.

These issues were discussed and settled way back in 2003-04 and the recognition to this Federation was granted thereafter. The quorum of 15% of membership for General Body meeting is a universally accepted one. Similarly, the provision that "in the absence of required quorum, the meeting shall be adjourned for half hour and adjourned meeting shall require no quorum" is also universally accepted provision. This is also accepted by DOPT at the time of grant of recognition in 1998-99 itself. (It may not be out of context to mention here that in the Parliament, it is a decision taken decades back that except on issues like voting on money bill etc the quorum issue will not be raked up by anybody.) These issues may be best left to the members of the Associations/Federations.

Also the issue of term of office bearers of the Federation was also discussed in detail- where the Administration had initially insisted upon a two year term – in 2003-04, and the issue was settled and we were permitted to have three year term. This position may please be permitted to continue.

Amendment proposed by Federation

This Federation has sought permission for three amendments:

To increase the strength of National Executive Committee from 15 to 21;

To increase the number of delegates in the triennial conference by one woman delegate over and above the entitled delegates (based on the membership); and

To cause recovery of membership of Federation through check off system.

The first one was initially rejected and the fresh request is kept pending where as the other two are rejected.

We have made the request based on functional requirement. As per the re-verification held in 2006, our membership strength was 20805 (i.e. 44.44%). (The list of affiliated Association did not include 5 Associations whose membership would be more than 2500. No correction has been made till this date). An executive committee of 15 is 0.072% of the strength of 20805. Our request is for a Committee with strength of 0.10% (i.e. 21) of the membership. A higher strength of 0.109% is permitted to National Audit Federation whose membership was stated as 7301. It is therefore requested that the amendment to the Constitution of the Association enhancing the strength of National Executive Committee may please be permitted.

The request for increasing the number of delegates allowing one woman delegate in addition to the existing entitled strength is an attempt to involve the woman employees in the decision making process. As such there should be no objection to such a provision as the expenditure would be borne by the Associations.

The CCS (RSA) Rules insist the membership shall have to be realized through check off system. The OM dated 3rd July, 2002 by DOPT on granting recognition to Federation states that CCS (RSA) Rules, 1993 is amended to the extent permitting recognition of Federations. It clearly shows that the realization of membership of Federations could also be realized through check off system.

It is therefore requested that this may please be permitted.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

Grant of recognition at the Department level:

DAI stated that issues/ problems of staff are different in different field offices. Further, in IA&AD, each field office is a separate cadre controller and therefore best placed to resolve local issues. Hence, field level staff associations have been recognized at the field office level. The system has worked well and there is no pressing need to change it. However, the Federation may furnish a paper on the advantages of the system being proposed by it.

Increase in the strength of the NEC of the Federation and ensuring representation of women in it:

Pointing out that none of the members of the Federation present in the meeting was a lady; the DAI stated that the Federation may first reserve some of the posts of its NEC out of its present strength for women in the first instance. The representation of women should be at least 1/3rd of the present strength of the executive. Thereafter, the Federation may forward a proposal for increase in strength of the National executive.

Quorum:

DAI informed that 1/3rd quorum of the membership of the Federation/affiliated staff associations for General Body and other meetings has been prescribed by the DoPT. However, the matter will be looked into after ascertaining the position prevailing in other departments. In the meantime, the present rules regarding 1/3rd quorum will continue to be in force.

 

Demand No.: 2. Declaration of results of verification of Membership of Federations initiated vide Circular No. NGE/08/2008 No. 156-NGE (JCM)/26-2005.

Explanation:

The reverification of the membership of the recognized federations was ordered vide the aforementioned Circular. The deadline for the field offices to submit information was 8th August, 2008. Till this day, the result of this verification is not announced. It shall be highly appreciated if the result of this verification is formally announced based on the membership of 1st June, 2008 as stated in the circular.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that the verification process was in final stages. The result thereof will be intimated to all the federations soon.

Demand No.: 3. Acceptance of nomination of Shri S. K. Vyas as Member, Staff Side, Departmental Council

Explanation:

This Federation has nominated Shri S K Vyas as Member, Staff Side, Departmental Council of the IA&AD. The acceptance of his nomination was kept pending stating that final decision would be taken after the fate of his nomination to the National Council/JCM is known. It is more than a year since the Chairman, National Council (Cabinet Secretary) has accepted the nomination of Shri S K Vyas overruling the objections raised by IA&AD.

The nomination of Shri S. K. Vyas is well within the scheme and constitution of JCM and hence it is requested that his nomination may please be accepted.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

During discussions, the Federation stated that their copy of the constitution of the Departmental Council provided for retired employees as staff side members in the Departmental Council. In response, DAI stated that the constitution of the Departmental Council, which was in conformity with DoPT's own instructions, did not provide for retired employees as members of Staff side. However, the Federation may forward a copy of the constitution in its possession for further examination.

Demand No.: 4. Vacation of victimization for Association activities in Kerala and Rajkot offices

Explanation:

The situation in Kerala office has no parallel in the history of IA&AD. What one could notice in Kerala is total infringement of personal privacy, total and violent negation of all civilized norms of administration. Nearly one sixth of personnel in the offices of Accountants General (both in Audit as well as A&E) offices have been proceeded against-many of them more than once - under Rule 14 as well as Rule 16 of CCS (CCA) Rules, 1965 and almost all of them have been penalized heavily and cumulatively for the simple reason that they exercised their right to live with dignity in a sovereign country. Shri K.A. Manuel has been dismissed from service.

The situation in the O/o AG (Audit), Gujarat, Rajkot is nothing but bizarre. The President of Civil Audit Association, Rajkot is kept under suspension for more than one year, again violating all extant orders in this regard. The enquiry report exonerating him has been set aside by the disciplinary authority and fresh enquiry ordered.

Repeated discussions have not brought about any tangible result whereas violation of basic human rights of the employees is being denied. The situation in both the offices may be brought back to normalcy by vacating victimization of Association activists and leaders without any further delay.

Note:

The Federation withdrew this demand from the formal agenda.

Demand No.: 5. Grant of benefit of promotion from Section Officers to Assistant Audit Officers for those promoted between 01.01.2006 to 01.09.2008

Explanation:

Hqrs office had clarified to field offices that "as the cadres of AAO and SO have been merged and upgraded in PB-2 (Rs. 9300-34800) with grade pay of Rs. 4800 w.e.f. 01.01.2006, promotion from SO to AAO on/after 01.01.2006 are to be treated as null and void". (It is not known whether any formal order was issued in this regard.) This has caused big financial loss to many of the officials who have been promoted as AAO between 1st Jan 2006 and 1st Sept 2008. The Gazette notification by the MOF dated 29th August 2008 took effect from 1st Sept.2008. The promotion to AAO from SO is based on a recruitment rule and as no Recruitment Rule can be amended with retrospective effect. Till amended through proper notification, the merger can not be said to have taken place. The formal circular stating that the cadres of Section Officer and AAO are re-designated as AAO was issued on 27th May 2009 by Headquarters.

It is therefore requested that the instructions, if any issued, to treat the promotion from SO to AAO between 1st Jan, 2006 and 1st Sept. 2008 as null and void may please be withdrawn and all such personnel may be granted one increment @ 3% in the GP of 4800 on the day they were promoted as AAO and their pay may please be re-fixed.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that the merger of both the grades of AAO and SO was effective from 01.01.2006. As the recommendations of the 6th CPC in this respect applied in toto, the demand could not be accepted.

Demand No.: 6. Extension of benefits of MACP to Assistant Audit/ Accounts Officers

Explanation:

The MACP scheme that has been implemented from 1st Sept., 2008 though beneficial to the cadres upto Sr. Auditor/Sr. Accountant has left a feeling of disaffection amongst Asstt. Audit/Accounts Officers. The main reason for this disaffection is overlooking of the stated position by the Department viz-a-viz Asstt Audit/Accounts Officers (previously Section Officers). The MSO (Admn.) Vol. I states that "Section Officer's (re-designated as Asstt Accounts/ Audit Officers) service is an appointment and not regular line of promotion". The Fact that the service rendered in the cadre of AAO only is counted for future promotion confirms the above position.

It is therefore in fitness of things that the MACP scheme is made applicable to the cadre of AAO (and above) treating the date/month of placement as AAO (previously SO) as the entry date/month into the service. It will be quite appropriate to mention here that in respect of Stenographers who have switched over from LDC cadre by negotiating departmental examination, the Headquarters office has clarified that the entry into stenographer cadre is to be treated as entry into the service for the purpose of MACP and all benefits there under has been extended to such Stenographers.

In the same analogy, it is requested that the Grade Pay of Rs. 5400 on completion of 10 years and 6600 on completion of 20 years and 7600 on completion of 30 years of service may please be granted to all from the date/month of entry in AAO (previously SO) cadre.

That is without prejudice to our demand for the grant of Grade Pay 5400 in PB-3 on completion of 4 years to AAOs.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that the cadre of LDC did not constitute a feeder cadre for the Stenographers' cadre which is not the case with promotion of regular Group C cadres as Section Officers (now AAOs). The regular Group C cadres were in direct line of promotion to Group B cadres. Hence the demand of the Federation could not be agreed to. Further, in case of promotion of departmental candidates as Section Officers (now AAO), SOGE was an eligibility requirement.

Regarding the anomalous situation in pay fixation pointed out by the Federation, the situation existed across all the departments in Government of India and the National Committee constituted for the purpose would examine it.

Demand No.: 7. Fill up vacant posts including Gr D. No matching savings at the cost of Grp B, C & D cadres

Explanation:

The sanctioned strength of the Department in the 1990s was 72000 with a vacancy of nearly 7000. Today, the PIP is 44000. All these vacancies are mainly in the Gr. C&D cadres. All these vacancies are in the lower cadres of Auditor/Accountant, LDC & Gr D.

This shortage in man power has a telling effect on discharge of functions. Getting of personnel through SSC is a cumbersome and time consuming process. Hence it is proposed that Department may take steps to fill up vacancies on its own. This would ensure quality. Further, interstate postings could be avoided sticking to state wise recruitments.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that recruitment in Group B and C cadres was being undertaken to address the deficits. The recruitment was however being undertaken in a phased manner to avoid possible bunching and consequent stagnation. Reminding the Federation that Gr D had been redesignated as Gr C post in Sixth Pay Commission's recommendations, he stated that the Department was exploring means to address gaps in this cadre across the department.

Demand No.: 8. Permit self certification for TA/DA claims

Explanation:

The present position regarding production of bills for food, conveyance etc. toward TA/DA claims would affect the efficiency and output adversely. One will have to spend time to procure bills than concentrating on work at hand.

It is therefore proposed that self certification be permitted (as is the case with Railway Accounts) or the previous TA/DA rates be doubled.

Note:

The Federation expressed its gratitude for Headquarters' instructions dated 03.02.2010 in this regard.

Demand No.: 9. Upgrade LDCs by re-designating them as Acctts /Audit Assistants and grant following pay scales to different cadres:

Accounts/Audit Asstt.- PB-1 with Grade Pay Rs. 2400

Accountant/Auditor/- PB-2 with Grade Pay Rs. 4200

                                 Steno Gr II

Sr Accountant/Auditor- PB-2 with Grade Pay Rs. 4600

                                Steno Gr I

SO/JAO/AAO/PS- PB-2 with Grade Pay Rs. 4800

PB-3 with Grade Pay Rs. 5400 on completion of 4 years

Accounts/Audit Officer - PB-3 with Grade Pay Rs. 6600

Sr. Acctts/Audit Officer- PB-3 with Grade Pay Rs. 7600

Explanation:

The demand is self explanatory. The demand for higher pay for Sr. Auditor/ Sr Accountant gets strengthened with the hiking up of pay of Assistants of CSS with effect from 1st Jan., 2006. It may be noted that the Assistants of CSS were at the pay scale of Rs. 5500-9000 on 1st Jan 2006. It was with effect from 15th Sept., 2006 their pay was revised to 6500-10500 with a rider that 6th CPC would take a final call on the issue.

As stated by PD (Staff) in the last formal meeting that hence forth all recruitments would be to the cadre of DEO with Grade Pay Rs. 2400. Hence the demand that all LDCs be upgraded as DEO with a new nomenclature Audit/Accounts Assistant so as to retain the seniority.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI informed the Federation that though direct recruitment would be made in the DEO cadre, it would be limited to the functional requirements. The LDC cadre would continue to exist as a promotional grade for Group 'C' cadre in the grade pay of Rs.1800.

Demand No.: 10. Restore unilateral transfer policy

Explanation:

Hundreds of employees are victims of ban on unilateral transfer. With the Staff Selection Commission adopting a policy of posting personnel from one state to another, this issue has become acute. It is therefore requested that the unilateral transfer may kindly be restored.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that unilateral transfers proposed by the Federation would exacerbate existing deficits in field offices already facing staff shortages. He added that any recruitment in the Department was handled by either the UPSC or SSC. As per extant instructions including those from the Apex Court, such recruitments needed to have an all India basis. Therefore, the Government could not permit local recruitments. Explaining the process of allocation of dossiers amongst various cadre controllers in the Department, DAI stated that this is done on the basis of certain norms fixed for this purpose. The process was extremely fair and transparent and had even been appreciated by the SSC.

DAI added that any rethinking on reintroduction of unilateral transfers could be considered only after staffing has reached an optimal level in all the field offices.

Demand No.: 11. 20% of AAO post for seniority cum fitness promotion (Supervisor)

Explanation:

At present the scheme of Supervisors is as follows: 20% of Section Officers (i.e. 20%) in A&E side and 8% of Section Officers in Audit Side. With the merger of Section Officers and AAOs, the percentage needs to be re-worked out.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI did not agree to the demand for increasing the strength of Supervisors to 20 per cent of the merged AAO/SO (now re designated as AAO) cadre. He added that post 6th CPC implementation, all recruitment rules including those of supervisor were under revision. Till such time, their strength would be fixed to the level existing on 31/12/2005.

Demand No.: 12. Re-imbursement of hotel charges to Railway Audit personnel wherever Railway accommodation is not allotted while on tour

Explanation:

The Officers and staff of the Railway Audit Wing of the IA&AD on tour duty for inspections/reviews are governed by the Railway TA Rules envisaging travelling on Duty passes and stay in Railway Rest houses at the work spot. The period of stay for the tour party at the place of duty ranges between 3 and 8 days for carrying out inspections/review as per the programme of Audit.

In practice, however, difficulties are being faced by the inspection personnel on tour due to non-availability of Railway rest houses at the work spot/non-allotment of accommodation for the required periods in the rest houses wherever available due to priority in allotment in favour of the Railway personnel on tour. The period of allotment does not exceed 3 days at a time as per the local arrangements. Besides, the touring personnel have to vacate the accommodation even after allotment for these restricted periods in the event of requirement of Railway personnel in exigencies arising out of Railway Administration.

As this affects the unhindered conduct/completion of inspections/ reviews as programmed to the required satisfaction and impacts on the output it was requested during earlier meetings that the members of the inspection/review parties may be permitted to stay in hotels of appropriate entitlement wherever Rest house facilities are not available/accommodation not allotted during the period of inspection/review and expenditure thereof be reimbursed to the personnel on tour duty.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that no such instances had been referred by any of the Railway Audit offices. He suggested that the proper course of action would be to bring any such instance to the notice of the local Principal Director of Audit who would seek a resolution in consultation with the Railway Administration.

Demand No.: 13. Stop downsizing of P&T Audit Offices; conduct audit of private service providers as per TRAI regulations

Explanation:

It is reported that reduction in the actual strength of P&T Audit is being considered. This is based on the report of a task force formed in 2007. This Association and All India Audit and Accounts Officers Association had jointly finalized a study report on P&T Audit and had submitted to C&AG vide letter dated 11th May, 2007. According to the said report (copy given elsewhere) there is a shortage of 303 Auditors/Sr. Auditors, 192 AAO and 63 AO/SAO (in 2007).

Similarly this Association had demanded (letter No. AIA/B-1/93/2007 dated 24th Sept., 2007) Audit of private telecom service providers by C&AG in line with the Govt. notification dated 17th November,2002 and subsequent directive vide No. 11-4/2001-A&L dated 13th August 2003 by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to all private service providers to make available all the documents to DGA (P&T). But the Department has failed till this day, causing irreparable loss to the exchequer and bonanza to the private service providers. These would ensure expansion of P&T Audit.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI stated that a manpower requirement study was in progress which would take another five to six months to complete. A holistic view on staffing would be taken thereafter.

Demand No.: 14. Permit all Employees in the GP of 1800 to appear for all Departmental Exams including SOGE

Explanation:

With the upgradation of all Grp Ds and Grp C with Grade Pay Rs. 1800, available to Gr C all such employees be permitted to write the SOGE examination on completion of 3 years. Similarly, promotional exam to Auditor/Accountant may also be made open to all such personnel, including canteen employees.

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI did not agree to the demand as it involved a jump of four stages. He explained that such a dispensation would involve amendment to recruitment rules. The recruitment rules, for taking effect, require approval of multiple ministries/departments. In view of the quantum of jump being proposed, it would not be possible to get all on board. In view of the above, employees in the grade pay of Rs.1800 would have to first get promotion to the grade of LDC to be eligible for SAS.

Demand No.: 15. Permit the Common SOGE paper passed candidates to avail benefit under Adhoc AAO scheme to in A&E office

Explanation:

The scheme for regularization of adhoc SO would meet the aspirations of one and all waiting for promotion if Para (iii) of the Circular 16/NGE/2009 dated 25.03.2009 is modified to permit the candidates who opted for Civil Audit SOGE in those A&E offices where SOG (Accounts) Examination is suspended but declared passed in common papers are permitted to exercise an option for either continuing with SOGE Civil Audit or preferring to continue as SOGE passed so as to be covered under the scheme vide Circular date 25.03.2009.

It shall be beneficial to all such candidates who have passed SOGE-but opted for SOG Civil Audit in the offices where the SOGE (Accounts) is suspended- are permitted to avail option either to be considered as passed in SOGE (Accounts) and thus be covered under the scheme vide Circular Dated 25th March, 2009 or to continue as a candidate of SOGE (Civil Audit).

The response of the DAI to the demand:

DAI did not agree to the demand.

Demand No.: 16. Withdraw punitive actions against mass employees for participants in the Mass Casual Leave on 8th April 2010

Explanation:

This Association has been requesting for agenda meeting with DAI since Dec 2008. The agenda items submitted for meeting with DAI vide this Association Letter Dt AIA/B-1/89/2009 Dt 15 Dec 2008 was discussed with PD, Staff on 20th April 2009 with the assurance that meeting with DAI would be arranged which never materialized.

This Association waited for courtesy meeting with the next incumbent which materialized after nearly 5 months (on 19th Nov 2009). Immediately after the courtesy meeting agenda items for bilateral meeting was submitted vide our letter dated 25th November 2009.

Every ten days we were reminding of the meeting and were continuously assured of the meeting, but never the date was finalized.

Also, during this time the government of India revised the Grade Pay of Assistants of CSS wef 1.1.2006 once again creating disparity in pay scales of SA and Assistants of CSS where as SCPC had very specifically proposed same Grade Pay for both.

The award of Central Board of Arbitration granting parity in pay scales of SA and Assistant of CSS (CA 3/2001) is pending with government despite the fact that the staff side had agreed to forego the arrears of pay on account of the implementation of the award and proposed that the award may be implemented form 1.1.2006.

It is in this background that to record the resentment a call for observance of Mass Casual leave on 8th April 2010 was given. It may also be noted that the programme was jointly observed by Joint Action Committee of Audit & Accounts Employees and Officers Organizations (including Organized Accounts such as Civil Accounts under CGA and Postal Accounts).

In our letter dated 19th March 2010 intimating about the programme of Mass Casual Leave we had requested for a meeting on the charter of demands.

In our informal interaction with PD, Staff we had stated that if the admin gives a letter that a meeting would be arranged to discuss the issues, we are ready to take back the call.

It is learnt that some misunderstanding on the whole situation has been created and we would like clear it at the time of discussion.

It would be highly appreciated if the punitive measures ordered are withdrawn.

Note:

This demand was withdrawn by the Federation on 23.06.2010.

******