Proposed changes in IAS rules: NDA states join chorus of protest, Mamata writes; ‘Don’t push us’

More states are protesting against the Centres’ proposed amendments to the statutes that give it ultimate authority to make decisions on the appointment of IAS officers, despite the fact that the Government has tightened the rules even further in a revised version. The Maharashtra government decided to oppose the proposed reforms at a Cabinet meeting, according to reports. At least five states have written to the Centre condemning the changes.

According to Bihar Chief Secretary the new system is good. Other states have yet to respond. Mamata Banerjee wrote in her most recent letter to Modi and expressed her reservations about the changes in her first letter sent last week in reaction to the December letter.

The Centre has included two more amendments in its most recent draft, which give it authority to summon any IAS officer on a Central deputation in the public interest within a set timeframe. According to reports, the Centre has made similar changes for IPS and Indian Forest Service officers.

The proposed amendments to the IAS (Cadre) Rules, 1954, aim to change the rules for Central deputation of IAS officers from different states. A new paragraph was proposed, which states that the Central Government may recruit officers of various levels to deputation to the Central Government in accordance with the Central Deputation Reserve. The second addition stated that if the Central Government declines to recruit such officers, the state government shall remove them from service as required by the Central Government within a specified period. Once the number of officers to be deputated to the Centre has been determined by mutual agreement, the Central Government should have overriding authority to recruit them.

Despite the fact that the government has tightened the regulations even more in a revised form, more states are complaining against the Centre’s proposed revisions to the statutes that give them ultimate authority to make decisions on the appointment of IAS officers. The new approach, according to Bihar Chief Secretary Amir Subhani, is beneficial. Other states are yet undecided. Mamata Banerjee underlined her misgivings about the modifications in her most recent letter to Modi, which was issued last week in response to the December letter.

Two further amendments have been added by the Centre. In its most recent draught, the Centre added two further revisions, giving it the right to summon any IAS official on a central deputation in the public interest within a stipulated timeline. According to the CDC, if the state fails to release the officer by the appropriate date, the officer will be deemed relieved by the centre. According to reports, the Centre has made similar modifications for officers of the Indian Police Service and the Indian Forest Service.

The proposed revisions to the IAS (Cadre) Rules, 1954, are intended to alter the rules governing the central deputation of IAS officers from various states. A new paragraph was proposed, stating that the central government may recruit officials of various levels to serve on deputation to the central government in accordance with the Central Government Deputation Act.

The second provision said that if the federal government refuses to hire such officials, the state government must remove them from service within a set term as directed by the central government. The Central Government should have overriding authority to recruit officers once the number of officers to be deputized to the Centre has been set by mutual agreement.

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