After over two decades of not filling up the Junior Engineer posts in its engineering wing,the UT Administration has now finally decided to fill the vacant posts from the Central Staff Selection Commission,New Delhi.
While the neighbouring states have their own staff selection commissions,in the absence of such a body in Chandigarh,the administration has no option but to depend on deputationists for the posts.
Chandigarh Newsline has,in these columns,highlighted the severe shortage of manpower owing to which,work at the UT Estate Office and the UT Engineering Department has been suffering.
Since the UT Engineering is the parent department,initially all the staff including the junior engineers were diverted to other departments such as the UT Estate Office,Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB),among others.
To add to the strength to its field staff ,the UT Administration has also been filling up these posts by seeking junior engineers on deputation from Punjab and Haryana. All this is set to change,however,with the UT Administration set to fill the posts through the central staff commission.
Speaking with Chandigarh Newsline,the Advisor to the UT Administrator K K Sharma said: We are aware of the shortage of manpower specially in the engineering department. Filling up the vacancies in all the departments for smooth functioning of the administration is our priority. Soon we are going to fill these posts,of JE to start with through central staff commission and we have already written to them in this regard.
While Chandigarh has grown,from 30 sectors to over 60 in nearly two decades,there are only four junior engineers (JE) in the building branch to oversee the entire city. The number assumes significance as the junior engineers are required to check violations and encroachments in all the 60 sectors.
A reality check in the building branch of the UT Estate Office,entrusted with the responsibility of keeping a tab on encroachments and violations and issuing corresponding notices to the violators,reveals that even after over two decades,no new posts have been created to share the workload of the entire city.
In the past,there were nine posts for junior engineers and six posts of draftsmen in the city and in the current situation,where workload has increased manifold,there are only four junior engineers and three draftsmen.
Whenever a building plan is submitted,the concerned JE of the area is required to physically inspect the premises before the plan is sanctioned and is also responsible for keeping a tab after it is approved to see if any changes have been made in the plan during the construction work.
It was almost a decade and a half ago when the department of engineering was merged with the Estate Office and the former was given the responsibility of making a common pool of engineers for both the departments.