PUNJAB GOVT KICKSTARTS PROCESS OF 50,000 GOVT RECRUITMENT WITH CABINET APPROVAL TO RESTRUCTURE 10 DEPARTMENTS
NEW POSTS TO BE CREATED IN PLACE OF EXISTING NON-ESSENTIAL ONES, MANY OF WHICH WERE LYING VACANT FOR LONG PERIODS
CM AUTHORISED TO AMEND RULES TO CARRY OUT FRESH RECRUITMENT IN LINE WITH SERVICE DELIVERY NEEDS OF DEPARTMENTS
Chandigarh, December 30:
Kickstarting the process of recruitment to 50,000 government posts during the current fiscal, as promised by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, the Punjab Cabinet on Wednesday approved restructuring of 10 departments, thus also paving the way boosting their functional efficacy through fresh recruitments and technical upgradation.
The Cabinet meeting, held through Video Conferencing under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, decided to create new and more relevant posts where required in place of the existing non-essential or antiquated ones, many of which had been lying vacant for prolonged periods. The move also marks a major shift towards modernisation of government departments to equip them to meet the contemporary operational challenges,
The Chief Minister said the present-day challenges necessitated cutting the tail where necessary, with recruitment of more staff as needed, keeping in mind the service delivery of various departments. The Cabinet authorised him to amend rules as and where needed to carry out the proposed recruitment after completion of the restructuring process.
Notably, the Cabinet led by Captain Amarinder Singh had on October 14 approved a State Employment Plan 2020-22, to fill vacant jobs in government departments, boards, corporations and agencies in a phased time-bound manner, in fulfillment of the Chief Minister’s promise of providing one lakh government jobs to youth in the remaining term of his government. With the restructuring process, as many of the vacant posts will be done away with,
The 10 Departments to be restructured following the Cabinet decision are: Labour, Technical Education & Industrial Training, PWD (B&R), Animal Husbandry, Fisheries & Dairy Development, Tourism & Cultural Affairs, Local Government, Printing & Stationery, Sports & Youth Service Welfare, Defence Services Welfare, Cooperation Department. As many 2375 posts will be abolished/surrendered in these departments, with another 785 to be created in the first go, as part of the restructuring exercise, an official spokesperson disclosed, adding that moving forward, more posts will be created as required.
In the Labour Department, against 204 vacant/irrelevant old posts, 68 new posts will be created for various cadres, including IT, Accounts, Labour Inspector and Legal cadre. It was also decided by the Cabinet to consider all posts in Group-D as dying cadre.
The Technical Education & Industrial Training department will see 84 new posts being created against 271 non-essential or vacant posts, while as many as 81 posts of Service Provider Trainers will be re-designated as Group Instructors in the same scale. Of these, 53 posts will be used as Assistant Apprenticeship Advisor (Junior) and the rest as Group Instructors. The posts of Group-D lying vacant since long would be filled by outsourcing.
Under the restructuring proposal okayed for the PWD (B&R) department, the critical Design Cell will be now headed by a Chief Engineer, supported by Superintending Engineer (DRD), 4 XENs and 12 SDEs. The Design Cell would be responsible for designing of buildings, bridges and roads, to be constructed with latest techniques and technologies. Also, the existing system of Quality Control will be upgraded by increasing the three regional labs under the Deputy Director Research Lab Patiala. The Quality Assurance Mechanism Cell would consist of Chief Engineer (QA-cum-CVO), SE (QA-cum-SVO), 5 XENs-cum-VO, Deputy Director Research Lab and 10 SDEs.
Apart from this, to handle the establishment cases efficiently amid the increased work load, in place of one Chief Engineer there will now be Chief Engineers duly supported by two Deputy Directors (Administration). The newly created Legal Cell will handle the manifold increase in litigation, with posts of Senior Law Officer, Law Superintendent, Law Officer, Sr. Assistant Law and Law Clerk approved for the purpose. Further, 35 posts of IT professionals have also been approved, each with a defined role and objective to support and run the IT applications in PWD (B&R).
As a part of restructuring of Animal Husbandry, Fisheries & Dairy Development Department, the creation of 326 posts will help fill a large number of vacancies while doing away with some of the non-essential posts among the existing 625. Of this, 264 will be in Animal Husbandry, 19 in Fisheries and 43 in Dairy Development. Besides, all the vacant Group-D posts shall be considered as abolished.
As per the restructuring plan of Tourism, Cultural Affairs, Archaeology, Museum & Archives department, in place of 53 posts, of which many are lying vacant, 20 new ones will be created, while 87 vacant posts, including 67 Group D posts, will be filled through outsourcing.
As a part of its restructuring strategy, the Local Government department has been allowed by the Cabinet to create 23 posts against 49 earlier ones.
The Cabinet also gave the go-ahead to create four new posts besides filling up 30 posts as a part of restructuring in the Printing and Stationery Department. The need for restructuring in the department arose after the old technique of letter-press printing in the Government Presses at Patiala and Mohali, Government Type-writer workshop and Government Ticket Printing Press, Patiala was done away with.
Under the restructuring plan of Sports & Youth Services Department, the Cabinet gave concurrence to replace 69 non-essential posts with 42 new posts as per requirement, taking into cognisance the importance of coaches for improving the training of sportspersons in the state. The posts of Group-D lying vacant since long would also be filled by outsourcing.
The Cabinet also gave the nod to the Defence Services Welfare Department to create 23 posts, while doing away with 49 posts, under its restructuring proposal to further improve its efficiency and delivery of services.
As a part of restructuring of Cooperation Department, the Cabinet accorded approval to
increase of 93 posts, including two audit officers, 75 senior auditors, six superintendent grade-2 and 10 senior assistants, for expediting the audit work, while cutting down 120 posts of Inspector Audit against the total sanctioned posts of 774 and one post of driver against three approved posts of drivers.
PUNJAB CABINET OKAYS SEPARATE CADRES FOR SCERT/DIET PERSONNEL
Chandigarh, December 30: To enhance efficiency in the functioning of the Directorate of State Council of Educational Research & Training (SCERT) and District Institutes of Education Training (DIETs), the Punjab Cabinet led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Wednesday gave approval for the creation of separate cadres of their personnel.
It was been decided to notify separate rules for personnel of SCERT/DIETs, an official spokesperson said after the Cabinet meeting, which accepted the proposal mooted by the School Education department in this regard.
Currently, all the personnel of both SCERT and DIET are deputed from Directorate of DPI (School Education).
The decision will pave the way for notifying rules of the personnel of Group A, B & C Cadres of SCERT/DIETs in compliance with the undertaking given by the state government before the Government of India to have separate cadres of DIETs to further improve the quality of teacher training, with the overarching aim raising the bar of quality education for tstudents.
Pertinently, a separate cadre is being pursued by the Government of India with almost all states in the country. With the launch of Learning Enhancement Programme of ‘Padho Punjab Padhao Punjab’ project, it has become essential that DIETs are strengthened to maintain close liaison with the classroom teaching going on in schools, and also to share the experiences of the teachers.
Under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Teacher Education, DIETs are set up in every district as per GoI’s policy. At present, there are 17 DIETs in Punjab (one each in the old districts), while none exist in the newly created districts of Tarn Taran, Barnala, Pathankot, Fazilka and Mohali. Under the scheme, Central Government contributes 60% and remaining 40% is contributed by the State Government. The entire expenditure i.e. capital expenditure as well as salary of the teachers in a DIET is shared in the same ratio. Currently, DIETs are only providing pre-service training to ETT teachers i.e. the teachers posted in primary schools from Class 1 to 5.
PUNJAB CABINET APPROVES BRINGING PAY SCALES FOR FRESH GOVT RECRUITMENTS AT PAR WITH 7TH PAY COMMISSION
Chandigarh, December 30: The Captain Amarinder Singh led Cabinet on Wednesday approved certain amendments to the Punjab Civil Services Rules for granting new pay scales (matrix) on the pattern of the 7th Central Pay Commission for all fresh recruitments to State Government and its entities.
The decision to amend Volume-I, Part-1, Rule 4.1(1) to bring the pay scales for all prospective recruitments/appointments – direct recruitments/compassionate appointments – at par with the Central Government scales was taken during a virtual Cabinet meeting.
It may be recalled that the Finance Department had on July 17, 2020 issued instructions that these Pay scales in any cadre of any Administrative Department of the Punjab Government or its entities shall not be higher than the Pay scales for the same cadre in the Government of India, as notified as per the recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission. As per the letter dated January 15, 2015 issued by the Finance Department, and letters issued in continuation thereof, grant of basic pay (minimum of the pay band) and allowances during the probation period are also applicable as per the same rule.
According to a spokesperson of the Chief Minister’s Office, the amendment approved by the Cabinet stipulates that the expression “fixed monthly emoluments” for the employees, appointed to the service before the 17th day of July, 2020, means the amount drawn monthly by a Government employee equal to the minimum of the pay band of the service or post to which he is appointed. The said amount shall not include grade pay, special pay, annual increment or any other allowance, except travelling allowance drawn with reference to the grade pay of the relevant service or post.
Further, the amended rule states that the expression “fixed monthly emoluments” for the employees, appointed to the service against direct quota posts, on or after the 17th day of July, 2020 means the amount drawn monthly by the Government employee equal to the amount of relevant Level of Pay Matrix of service or post as notified by the Administrative Department concerned to which he is appointed. shall not include special pay, annual increment, or any other allowance, except travelling allowance drawn with reference to the relevant service or post.
The amended rule shall also not include any other emoluments which may be specifically classed as part of pay by the competent authority, as provided in rule 2.44 (b), said the spokesperson.
According to the spokesperson, the state’s Administrative Departments are now being advised by the Finance Department about the pay matrix for the new appointments to be made under the State Employment Plan. Further, the departments are in the process of direct recruitment by the recruiting agencies like Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC), Subordinate Service Selection Board (SSS Board) and the departmental committees, as the case may be.
PUNJAB CABINET OKAYS NOTIFICATION OF RULES TO REGULATE CASH TRANSPORTATION BY PRIVATE SECURITY AGENCIES
Chandigarh, December 30:
The Punjab Government has decided to strengthen the security mechanism for all cash transportation activities in the state by regulating all private security agencies engaged in such activities under the umbrella of the Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, (PSARA) 2005.
The state cabinet, at a virtual meeting chaired by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, gave the go-ahead to notify the Punjab Private Security Agencies (Private Security to Cash Transportation Activities) Rules, 2020, in pursuance of PSAR Act, 2005, which did not specifically cover the activities of the cash transportation agencies.
The new rules, drafted in line with similar rules issued by the Government of India in 2018, are aimed at facilitating secure and smooth transportation of cash in the state by bringing all Cash Transportation Agencies operating in Punjab under the regulation of PSAR Act, 2005.
With the notification of the new rules, all Cash Transportation Agencies operating in Punjab would be governed by the PSAR Act, 2005. Resultantly, the cash transportation agencies would be now required to obtain license from the State Controlling Authority and the persons entrusted with the task for security of the cash in transit would be needed to be suitably recruited, verified and trained as per the rules/guidelines laid down under the PSAR Act 2005, and the Cash Transportation Rules, 2020.
At present, the regulating Act for the private security sector in India is the Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, 2005. The Punjab government had in December 2007 notified the Punjab Private Security Agencies (PPSA) Rules under the enabling provisions of Section 25 of the 2005 Act. Since both, the PSAR Act, 2005 and the PPSA Rules 2007 did not include cash transportation activities in its ambit, the decision has now been taken by the state government to notify a new set of rules to eliminate the existing gap.
Notably, the Ministry of Home Affairs, GoI has notified the Model Rules: “The Private Security Agencies (Private Security to Cash Transportation Activities) Rules, 2018, under Section 24 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, (PSARA) 2005. The same have been published in the official Gazette of India vide notification dated August 8, 2018 and the State Government/UTs administration have been requested to formulate their rules, under Section 25 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, 2005, in line with the Model Rules already notified by the Government of India.