The leader of the Opposition in the Assam Legislative Assembly and Assam Congress Legislature Party (ACLP) chief,
Debabrata Saikia, has expressed grave concern at the reported conspiracy by a clique of Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers to hamper the promotion prospects of senior members of the Assam Civil Service (ACS) by means of amending certain provisions of the Assam Civil Services Rules, 2015 on the basis of Revision of Pay.
The proposed move would result in a wait of a minimum of six years from the date of holding of the relevant post for an ACS officer to be promoted from the post of Circle Officer to that of Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC) or Deputy Secretary, a minimum wait of six years for an ADC/Deputy Secretary to become Joint Secretary and a minimum wait of seven years for a Joint Secretary to become Additional Secretary.
Saikia said in a statement on Tuesday that if ratified, the changes in service rules would ensure that most senior ACS officers mainly of the 1992, 1993 and 1995 batches would not be able to rise above the level of Additional Secretary and thereby be deprived of attaining the level of Secretary at the time of retirement. This would be totally unfair to these officers as they have already had to wait for periods ranging from 18 years to 22 years to reach the level of Deputy Secretary or ADC.
Saikia pointed out the proposed changes would dilute the benefit of reservation of 30 Secretary-level posts for ACS officers, which had been implemented during the tenure of the erstwhile Congress Government following a cadre review undertaken by the former Additional Chief Secretary, Subhash Chandra Das.
Saikia reminded the Chief Minister, Sarbananda Sonowal, of his promise to protect the ‘Jaati-Maati-Bheti’ of Assam and demanded that the interests of the home-bred State Civil Service officers be safeguarded against such machinations.