What is the approved instruction/guidelines on substitute arrangements in place of regular Gramin Dak Sevaks on recommendations of the GDS Committee?
Substitute arrangements in place of regular Gramin Dak Sevaks against vacant GDS posts – DoP Order dated 11.02.2022
Government of India
Ministry of Communications
Department of Posts
Dak Bhawan, Sansad Marg,
New Delhi – 110001
Subject: Implementation of recommendation of GDS Committee on substitute arrangements in place of regular Gramin Dak Sevaks; against vacant GDS posts- reg.
This refers to paras 16.25 to 16.34 of the GDS Committee report and Directorate instructions issued vide letters No.17-115-GDS dated 21.10.2002, No.17-24/2017-GDS dated 25.05.2018 and No.19-43/2017-GDS dated 11.04.2019 on the above noted subject.
2. Recommendations of the GDS Committee on substitute arrangements in place of regular Gramin Dak Sevaks have been considered and the following instruction/guidelines on substitute arrangements in place of regular Gramin Dak Sevaks are approved:-
- Short Term Vacancies: Vacancies arising due to leave, medical condition of GDS etc upto 45 days shall be treated as Short Term vacancy. The following needs to be adhered to in case of making arrangement against Short Term vacancies:
- A substitute should not be engaged against a short term vacancy in any GDS posts in routine manner.
- In case of short-term vacancies, as far as possible, work may be managed by combining duties and “substitutes” shall not be provided against vacancies of less than 45 days.
- In case of Single Handed BO & Post Office Mail offices having single GDS post OR Double/Triple Handed BO and Post Office/Mail Office where the post of BPM/ABPM/Dak Sevak is lying vacant and stop-gap arrangement by combination with another GDS post of same office is not possible, then only a substitute may be provided. Such arrangements should not be continued for more than 45 days against any GDS post.
- Where Departmental officials are also available in the same office, where GDS post falls vacant, possibility of managing the work by Departmental officials or combination of duties of GDS, if any available in the office may be explored first.
- In case the work of vacant GDS post could not be carried out under the instructions contained in para 2 (i) (a) to (d) above, only then substitute arrangement in place of regular incumbent may be allowed to facilitate carrying out work unhindered with approval of the Engaging Authority.
- Long Term Vacancies: Vacancies of more than 45 days caused due to any circumstances including deputation, discharge, termination etc shall be termed as Long Term vacancies. The following needs to be adhered to in case of making arrangement against Long Term vacancies
- In case of long term vacancies, the combination of duties as provided in para 2 (i) above may be resorted to; and substitute may be allowed only if workload of the BO as well as its financial position/revenue norms justifies such engagement of filling of the post at BO on regular basis.
- Continuation of substitute arrangements beyond 45 days at a stretch may only be allowed by the authority next higher to the engaging authority. Such engagement should only be done in exceptional cases where action has been initiated for regular engagement, if justified based on work load financial/revenue norms.
- No substitute arrangement against any vacant GDS post shall continue beyond 90 days. Hence, regular/alternative arrangements must be made during the period beyond 90 days. If for any unavoidable reason, a substitute arrangement is required to be continued beyond 90 days, specific approval of the Head of Region/DPS (Region) will be necessary for reasons to be recorded in writing.
- In the case of stop gap arrangement against short term vacancies, it is clarified that such arrangements should be resorted to only in cases where the GDS is unable to undertake his/her duties due to his/her own action (unauthorized absence, fraud, misappropriation etc.), due to circumstances beyond his/her control like sudden serious illness/accident/death or because the department does not want him/her to continue (due to reasons of misconduct / dismissal / removal / put off duty etc.). In all other cases, action should be taken well in advance to fill up the post on a regular basis. Even where the post falls vacant unexpectedly, efforts should be made to manage the work through combination of duties as spelt out above.
- Practice of giving break for a few days and then again providing substitute for the same vacant GDS post is not proper. The number of days for which a substitute is engaged shall be counted from the first day when a substitute was provided against the vacant GDS post.
- In case, in unavoidable circumstances, the substitute arrangement continues beyond 1 year, approval of Head of Circle is required.
- In all cases of arranging substitute, detailed justification has to be recorded in writing while approving the case.
3. Substitute arrangement/ engagement for the GDS posts lying vacant due to deputation of regular incumbent GDS to IPPB/APS:
- Vacancies caused due to deputation to IPPB/APS etc. should be filled provisionally on regular basis. On repatriation of regular incumbent, GDS provisionally engaged against such post may be given posting in nearby BO/Post Office/Mail Office, if vacancies exist in same TRCA level and slab. While making engagement against such vacancies, it should made clear that their engagement is provisional and is against deputation vacancy and the same is liable for termination under Rule 8 of GDS (Conduct and Engagement) Rules, 2020 on repatriation of regular incumbent. An undertaking to this effect shall be obtained before the said provisional engagement.
- The GDSs selected for deputation to IPPB will be treated as on leave without allowance in Department of Posts. Before proceeding to IPPB, the GDS will apply for leave without allowance to the Divisional Head for the period of his/her deputation to IPPB.
- The Divisional Head will sanction leave without allowance in relaxation of
existing rules on sanction of leave for the period of deputation before they are relieved.
- Substitute arrangement may be made as per guidelines prescribed for arrangement of substitutes contained in this order.
- In case the selected candidate is GDSBPM, he/she shall hand over existing BO accommodation to the substitute/ provisionally engaged GDS for functioning of BO in case BO is functioning in Gram Panchayat/Govt. building.
4. The following needs to be adhered to while arranging a substitute in place of vacant GDS post:
- No substitute be allowed to take over charge unless the competent leave-sanctioning/engaging authority is fully satisfied that the substitute engaged against short-term/long-term vacancies possesses all the qualifications prescribed for the engagement.
- The substitute shall be provided under the risk and responsibility of the regular incumbent, if any.
- Drawing and Disbursing authority shall not draw allowances of any substitute unless the claim is accompanied by a certificate from the competent authority about the possession of requisite qualification by the substitute and their approval for making/continuing the arrangements.
- All Head of Division to ensure that long leave beyond 90 days is not granted to a GDS in routine manner to avoid substitute continuing in place of incumbents for long period.
5. While arranging for combined duty or substitutes, the engaging authority shall ensure that required user ID/password, enabled/configured RICT device etc are provided from the day one of such arrangement so that work loss for such vacant posts may be avoided.
6. The above instructions may kindly be brought to the notice of all engaging authorities of GDS for strict compliance. Any deviation of the above instructions will be viewed seriously and action would be required to be taken against official/ officers who allow substitute arrangement to continue beyond the prescribed limits in contravention of the above instructions.
7. If any previous instructions on the issues of ‘substitute’ arrangement are found contrary to above instruction/guideline, the same will stand superseded by this O.M.
8. Hindi version will follow.
Assistant Director General (GDS/PCC)
Tele No. 011-23096629