Grappling with staff shortage, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has recalled its staffers working on deputation with the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA). The civic body has also said that, henceforth, it won’t sent any of its staff to other government agencies.
Senior BMC officials said that staffers sent on deputation to other government bodies are often reluctant to return to their original postings. While the civic body has been facing the issue for over past one decade, the problem has come into focus since past few years with several corporators/legislators pointing out instances, where such officers have even worked against the interests of the civic body while on deputation.
Former BJP corporator and sitting MLA from Vile Parle Parag Alavani had taken up the issue in 2006, pointing out that the officials sent on deputation are reluctant to return and this appeared more in the case of those deputed to SRA, a nodal state agency for housing projects, where postings are considered lucrative. Alavani had then put forth an example of an assistant engineer, who had completed more than the allotted four years on deputation, but continued working at the SRA. Meanwhile, his post in the BMC remained vacant.
“BMC service rules are in line with those of the state so that an official can be sent on deputation to another authority for only four years and there has to be a gap of four years between two deputations. However, we have noticed that those sent on deputation are reluctant to return. We had to take a step against that is going on for over a decade now,” said a senior BMC official.
BMC is facing staff shortage in many departments, hence it is feasible option to call back its own employees sent on deputation, officials felt. BMC Commissioner Ajoy Mehta confirmed that the civic body has directed its employees on deputation to return to their original posts as soon as their deputation contract is completed. He also stated that agencies where BMC employees are sent on deputation will have to arrange for manpower on their own.