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With deputationists overstaying in Chandigarh for years, in some cases even till retirement, The Indian Express takes a look at solutions to curb this irregularity.

The Indian Express had reported how several officials, including PCS officers, those in the Municipal Corporation, teachers and principals in the education department, had been overstaying here in Chandigarh even as the deputation period had got over.

City’s own selection panel to promote local talent

Many residents have suggested Chandigarh’s own selection panel in order to give employment opportunities to Chandigarh’s talent in place of those deputationists from Punjab and Haryana who stay for years together in the City Beautiful.

Former councillor and BJP leader Saurabh Joshi claims that he had taken up the issue several times that Chandigarh talent must be promoted and given jobs in the city. “I had taken it up that youth from our city should be brought forward. We should have Chandigarh’s selection panel which does selections for different appointments here in UT departments,” Joshi said.

Strict transfer policy

It was in 2014 that the then education secretary Sarvjit Singh had said that they will implement the transfer policy strictly. However, even after that nothing much could be done. Chandigarh follows Punjab Service Rules for the appointment of teachers. Even then it clearly states that “the initial period of deputation may be extended up to five years by the administrative department concerned and in a rare case of special nature, if exigencies so require in public interest, such period may be extended beyond five years”.

President of UT Cadre Educational Employees’ Union Swarn Singh Kamboj states that to adjust the Punjab and Haryana teachers who are on deputation, promotion of UT cadre teachers is also affected.

Shuffling of depts

As there are officers on deputation who continue to hold the same departments for years, it is also suggested to have frequent shuffling of departments. This helps in checking the issue of developing of potential vested interests while sitting in a department.

Doctors on deputation too overstaying

There are medical officers on deputation who have been adjusted either in government hospitals or civil dispensaries of Chandigarh — working beyond the five-year period.

Sample this: A medical officer from Punjab came on deputation to Chandigarh in 2006 and has been working in one or the other hospital since then. As per the initial orders of the Chandigarh Administration, he was deputed as medical officer initially till February 28, 2007.

Later, the doctor got an extension and on September 5, 2011, in another order, accessed by The Indian Express, the Chandigarh Administration appointed him as “senior lecturer (urology)” in the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, against the vacant post of a reader for a period of one year. On September 13, 2011, the GMCH-32 submitted the doctor’s joining report.

In September 2012, the administration passed another order and the doctor was appointed as reader in GMCH-32 as Reader (Urology). The order said “he should join GMCH Sector 32 within fifteen days from the date of issue of this order”— a time when the doctor was already working in the GMCH.

As per policy regarding medical doctors in Punjab, the state Department of Health and Family Welfare had clearly stated in 2010 that “the medical officers would be sent on deputation for a period of three years after which they would stand repatriated to the department of health and family welfare. If PCMS doctors do not report to the health department at the end of the three-year deputation period, departmental action would be initiated against them”.

Similarly in another case, a medical officer on deputation came and joined the Chandigarh health department in October 2003 and has been here since then working as an incharge of a civil dispensary. Interestingly, her husband too worked in the UT health department for 15 years, managing a civil dispensary and then retired.

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