Revised Rotational Transfer Policy regarding AFHQ Cadre Civilian Personnel

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Revised Rotational Transfer Policy regarding AFHQ Cadre Civilian Personnel

Revised Rotational Transfer Policy regarding AFHQ Cadre Civilian Personnel

No. A/73298/TO/Policy/CAO (P-1 )

रक्षा मंत्रालय
संयुक्‍त  सचिव एवं मुप्रअ का कार्यालय


Rotational Transfer Policy regarding AFHQ Cadre Civilian Personnel has been formulated in accordance with existing DoP&T instructions and enclosed herewith. The policy is also applicable, mutatis mutandis to other categories of employee who are under administrative control of CAO‘s office.

These instructions supersede all the existing instructions on the subject hitherto in force.

The policy should be given wide publicity among AFHQ employees and implemented strictly.


(V Anandarajan)
4th Nov 2019

All Concerned

A/73298/TO/Policy/CAO(P-1 )


AFHQ Civilian Cadres comprise various services viz. AFHQ Civil Service, AFHQ Clerical Service, AFHQ Stenographers service etc. as well as Cadres such as DEO, Research, Official Language, Photography etc., AFHQ Civil Service provides a permanent bureaucratic set up in the Armed Forces Headquarters and various Inter service Organizations. AFHQ Stenographic Service personnel provide secretarial and office support to officers (Civilian, Service and Scientific & Technical Officers). AFHQ Clerical Service personnel provide clerical support to participating offices and plays crucial role in office management. Similarly personnel of other cadres also provide requisite technical and professional support in optimizing efficiency of the organization.

2. The personnel of AFHQ Civilian Cadres are posted to three Service Headquarters, HQ IDS and various Inter Services Organizations where service personnel and Scientific & Technical officers are posted on tenure basis which normally is of 03 years. Officers and staff of AFHQ Cadre are posted there for longer duration to ensure continuity and institutional memory. It is, however, equally important that an officer may not be continued in one office for unreasonably long duration to avoid developing vested interests. It is also not in the interest of an officer. Periodic transfers help them in their overall growth due to exposure to functioning of different organizations and various aspects of working of these organizations. Rotational transfer policy aims to harmonize these seemingly opposite objectives by prescribing a reasonable fixed tenure in an organization.

3. The existing turnover policy for AFHQ Cadres was formulated in 1991 prescribing maximum tenure in an organization. The Policy also provides for posting to outstation establishments. The policy underwent changes from time to time.

4. As per DOP&T M No. 11013/10/2013-Estt -A dated 13 June 2014 issued in pursuance of Hon’ble Supreme Court order in T.S.R. Subramanian case, the following action was required to be taken by all cadre controlling authorities:­- (i) Prescribe minimum tenure (ii) Have a mechanism akin to CSB for recommending transfer; and (iii) Place the transfer policy in public domain. Subsequently DOP&T vide another O.M. No . 11013/10/2013-Estt-A dated 02 Jul 2015 suggested to formulate a rotational transfer policy including thereunder provisions on tenures, posting on promotion, posting on return from leave/deputation, outstation postings, posting of disabled Govt servants, etc that will best serve public interest. It also requires to identify sensitive posts and to rotate such staffs every two/three years.

5. As already stated, although a rotational transfer policy (referred to as ‘Turnover Policy’) exists for AFHQ cadre, the same is required to be reformulated in accordance with above instructions of DOP&T including thereunder provisions for minimum and maximum tenure, composition of board to recommend transfer on completion of tenure, guidelines on sensitive posting and other aspects.

Keeping the above in view, the rotational transfer policy for AFHQ civilian cadres has been finalized with the approval of Defence Secretary. Any exception to this policy can be made with the approval of Defence Secretary. The revised rotational transfer policy is explained in the succeeding paragraphs.

Cadre Controlling Authority

The cadre controlling authority of AFHQ cadre personnel is Joint Secretary and CAO in Ministry of All cadre management functions such as promotion, removal from probations, confirmation, APAR management, posting/transfer of AFHQ personnel in Branches of HQrs/ISOs etc. come within the jurisdiction of JS&CAO in MoD. Hence orders can be issued only by or with the approval of the cadre controlling authority on various aspects of cadre management and other admin matters.

Organizations where AFHQ Civilian Personnel are posted

The list of organizations/offices of Ministry of Defence, where AF’HQ personnel are posted is as per Annexure-I. For cadre management purposes including posting/tran sfer, Army HQrs will continue to be segmented into six branches e. GS Branch, AG Branch, MGO Branch, MS Branch, QMG Branch & E-in-C Branch Posting/Transfer of AFl-IQ cadre civilian personnel will be carried out by O/o the JS & CAO. No diversion of posting of officials shall be permissible.


9. The maximum tenure for AFHQ personnel in a single spell in an organization has been prescribed in the existing transfer policy. However, the existing prescribed tenure requires review in order to strike a balance between the need for continuity in an organization and giving opportunity for growth and development to the employees of various AFHQ Cadre. Accordingly, the tenure of AFHQ personnel will now be as under:-

Sl. No Grade Tenure
1 Pr. Director/ Director/ Joint Director/Dy Director of AFHQ Civil Service and post of other service/ Cadres in the same level of pay 05 yrs
2 Section Officer of AFHQ Civil Service and posts of other Service/ Cadres in the same level of pay 05 yrs
3 Asstt Section·Officer of AFHQ Civil Service and posts of other Service/ Cadres in the same level of pay or below 06 yrs

Note- Posts in level 10 of pay matrix will have tenure of 04 years.

(a) On completion of 02 years of service in an organization, employees holding the posts upto level 9 in pay matrix, may apply for transfer. Officers holding the post in level 10 and above may apply for transfer after 01 year of service in an organization. Such requests for transfers may be considered by the competent authority keeping in view the various aspects of cadre management and subject to availability of vacancies.

(b) Officers/staff of all grades within two years of superannuation will be exempted from rotational t Where, however, it becomes necessary in the interest of overall cadre management to move an officer who is due for superannuation within two years, such officer can be posted with the approval of JS & CAO.

(c) Officers likely to be promoted within one year may be exempted from the rotational transfer and transfer of such officers may be decided at the time of promotion keeping in v iew the prescribed tenure of promoted The decision to grant exemption or otherwise in such cases will be taken by the Cadre Controlling Authority or the authority empowered to approve posting/ transfer.

10. Transfer on Promotion

(a) All officers on his or her promotion to the posts in level 9 and above shall ordinarily be transferred unless they have completed less than a year in that office.

(b) If the officer is due for superannuation within one year on promotion he/she may not be transferred as this would entail avoidable inconvenience to the organization as well as the individual. Further, such a transfer may result in delay in finalizing pension papers. Such an officer may be retained in the same organisation against an available vacancy of the promotional post. In the absence of a vacancy, the post held by him/her may be upgraded on personal basis by keeping one post in another organisation vacant so as not to exceed the cadre strength. On retirement the post will revert to its original level.

However, the final decision in this regard shall be taken by the Cadre Controlling Authority keeping in view all aspects of cadre management.

11. Surrender of Officers

Unilateral surrender of officers on any ground will not be allowed as surrender of an officer poses several problems to the Cadre Controlling Authority. If an officer is not performing, organisations concerned are expected to initiate appropriate action either to reform the officer or to penalize him/her if he or she doesn’t improve his or her ways. Moreover, the officer surrendered has to be posted somewhere and it will be equally difficult for any other organisation where he or she is posted as an alternative to work with such an officer. If situation warrants that an officer has to be surrendered then a request should be made to Personnel Division of O/o Joint Secretary & CAO in Ministry of Defence with detailed reasons. The Personnel Division will consider the request on merits, whether to transfer the officer or not.

12. Posting to an organization earlier worked: An officer on promotion or on rotational transfer or on transfer on request shall not be posted to an organization where he/she had earlier served within period of 05 years after his/her transfer from that organization.

13. Officers returning from deputation/long leave/long term training: Officers returning from deputation/long leave/long term training will be posted keeping in view the availability of vacancy at that time.

14. Leave Vacancy:O/o the JS & CAO may consider posting of Substitute Officer in case of leave vacancy exceeding 06 months subject to availability of officers for posting.

15. Persons with disability: Persons with disability suffer from a range of problem on account of mobility. There may be many peculiar issues viz., the location of bus stop/ metro station near their office, the area where they reside and the conveyance they are using to reach office etc., which may have a bearing on the performance of their official duties. Although these are minor issues for persons without disability, these can have a very huge effect on the day to day activities of a person with disability . Requests from persons with disability will, therefore, be considered for posting on case-to-case basis keeping the above considerations in view.

16. Outstation transfers: Offices forming part of AFHQ Cadre are mostly located in Delhi. However, there are some offices which are located outside Delhi. All services/posts of AFHQ Cadre have now all India transfer liability. As such, the Cadre Controlling Authority is empowered to post any employee of AFHQ Cadre to any of the offices located outside Delhi. However, as far as possible, the posting of AFHQ personnel to outstation establishment will be carried out in the following manner :

(a) Vacancies of outstation establishments of AFHQ cadre will be circulated in March and September every year seeking volunteers for posting to such vacancies. Applications received for posting to outstation establishments shall be considered and decided with approval of the Joint Secretary & CAO.

(b) An employee who has served or is serving at outstation establishment, can be considered for fresh tenure by the selection committee subject to his or her willingness after taking various factors into consideration viz, non­-availability of other volunteers for the post, less than 02 years of left over service However, where selection committee expects that other volunteers may become available in the near future, extension of tenure may be given to such employee on half yearly/ yearly basis if this doesn’t pose cadre management problems. Similarly, if any employee who has served or is serving in an outstation office, applies for posting to another outstation office on completion of his/her tenure, his/her request may also be considered subject to availability of volunteers.

(c) Newly recruited employees available for posting can also be considered for such post in They may apply for transfer out of that establishment after three years. Such request may be considered by the Cadre controlling Authority keeping in view the availability of suitable relief. However, no person with disability shall be posted to an outstation establishment unless he/she volunteers.

(d) An employee who has less than three years to serve before superannuation sh all not be transferred to a new station, unless he/she has made such a request.

(e) A lady employee shall, normally, not be transferred out of Delhi, except on request from her.

(f) In case of an employee whose spouse is employed in a Govt. Department/ Public Sector undertaking located in Delhi, DOP&T instructions on posting of husband and wife at the same station shall be implemented.

(g) Transfer orders out of Delhi in respect of an employee shall be issued with the approval of Joint Secretary & Chief Administrative Officer in Ministry of Defence.

17. Committee for recommending transfers: Vide this office Note No. 47955/Parl Assurance/CAO/P-1 dated 27 Apr 2015 (Annexure-II), Committees have been constituted for recommending transfer in various grades. It has been decided to retain the same committee for recommending transfer in all cases. The recommendations of the committee are required to be approved by the Competent Authority for effecting posting/transfer of AFHQ Cadre Personnel.

18. Cut off date and tentative schedule of transfer:

(a) The cut-off date for calculating the period of residency in an organization will be 1st Jan.

(b) The rotation under RTP in each grade will be undertaken once in a year.

(c) To ensure smooth transition from outgoing to incoming staff, rotation will be done phase-wise and grade wise once in a year as under (indicative schedule) :

15th March Deputy Director equivalent and above
15th April Section Officers equivalent and below

(d) The phased implementation of the transfer policy will be carried out from 2020 onwards.

19. Non compliance of orders issued by O/o JS &CAO: JS & CAO being the Cadre Controlling Authority of AFHQ cadre shall be the competent authority for transfer of AFHQ Cadres’ officers of any Grade from one organization to another organization and it shall be the duty of the concerned Coord Sections to relieve such officers within the period mentioned in If not relieved within that period, the officer concerned shall be deemed to have been relieved and thereafter the officer shall not be entitled to draw any salary and allowances from organizations from which transferred.

20. Identification of sensitive posts in each organization and rotation of holders of such posts: Each organization is required to identify sensitive posts in their respective organization keeping in view the eve guidelines on this issue and to ensure that officials posted to such sensitive posts are rotated every two/ three years. It will be the responsibility of the concerned Coord Officer to ensure compliance of CVC guidelines on sensitive postings. For CAO’s office ‘P’ Division will ensure compliance of these guidelines.

21. Although efforts have been made to provide for broad policy for effecting transfers/ posting but there may still be many situations for which the above mentioned provisions may not be able to cater for. In all such situations, JS & CAO being the cadre controlling authority will be the competent authority to decide/ approve the posting. Further, there may also be circumstances which sometimes require posting/transfer on administrative or other grounds. For this purpose also, Joint Secretary & -CAO or an authority empowered by him/her will be the competent authority.

22. This supersedes Turnover/ Transfer policy hitherto in force.

(V Anandarajan)
4th Nov 2019

Source: CAOMOD Click here to view/download the PDF