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Durga Shakti Nagpal suspension: What options does IAS officer have?

The state govt will have to issue a chargesheet to the officer within 45 days of the suspension.

August 3, 2013 1:06:04 am

What will happen next

As per rule 3 of All-India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules,the state government will now have to intimate the Union government (Department of Personnel and Training — DoPT) within 15 days about the reasons of suspension.

This time limit is not fixed since the rules say “ordinarily” with it. The state government will have to issue a chargesheet to the officer within 45 days of the suspension and if the government fails,it will have to take permission of the Centre which generally gives another 45 days to issue the chargesheet. These rules are applicable to all three All-India Services (IAS,IPS and Indian Forest Service).

Other options before her

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As per rule 16 of the above mentioned rules,she can appeal before the Union government. But,she has to do this within 45 days of receiving the suspension order. Appeals are addressed to the secretary,DoPT and being the minister-concerned of this department,Prime Minister Manmohan Singh himself will take decision. Normally,in such cases,the appeals are rejected and suspensions are confirmed since the Centre hardly embarrasses the state governments.

But in rare cases,it does. For instance,in 2010 the DMK government in Tamil Nadu had suspended one officer C. Umashankar and when state government smelled that DoPT has taken views against it,the state government revoked the suspension.

In 2011,Promila Shankar,an IAS officer of UP cadre,was suspended by the then Mayawati government because she had visited Sri Lanka as a free companion of her husband without the consent of the state government. On her appeal,the Central declared it “ab initio null and void” and she was reinstated. Considering media reports and with the IAS Association lobbying for her,the DoPT sources say the chances are in her favour.

What if she was an IPS officer

Rules are same for all three All-India Services (IAS,IPS and Indian Forest Service-IFoS). State has full right to take action against the officers serving under it. Only in cases of chief secretary,director general of police and chief conservator of forests,before putting on suspension,the state government must take prior approval of the Union government.

Things would have been same or even worse if she would have been an IPS or IFoS since the IAS fraternity is known to protect their colleagues,unlike other services whose matters are handled by the Ministry of Home Affairs (for IPS) and Environment and Forests (for IFoS) by the officers sitting there.

What if she was posted at the Centre

If the officer is posted with the Central government,such orders are taken by the concerned department where they are serving with consultation from the DoPT. In case the officer is posted in AGMUT cadre,the views of the Ministry of Home Affairs are also taken even in the case of IAS and IFoS. Normally,departmental action against officials of all these services becomes difficult if the officer is posted in states and the Centre wants to take action against them.

There are around 200 cases where the Centre has forwarded the complaints to state governments and despite reminders they have not received any response.

Compiled by Shyamlal Yadav

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