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 Disciplinary Rules – An introduction

PREAMBLE It is said that the essence of Government service is the sense of discipline to which all Government employees are subjected and the privileges to which they are entitled to. Two sets of rules cover the dos and don’ts for Government employees. The action to be taken for failure to observe the dos & don’ts as also other omissions and commissions codified. These are the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964 and CCS (CCA) Rules, 1965.

CCS (Conduct) Rules 1964

2.    The Conduct expected of a Government servants are defined in CCS (Conduct) Rules 1964. Any conduct contrary to the provisions of this Rule is construed as Misconduct. Let us discuss about the definition of Misconduct in General. What constitutes misconduct and what is not construed as Misconduct from judicial view in the Appendix.

CCS (CCA) Rules 1965 

3.    Every Government servant is expected to conduct himself as becoming of a Government servant as stipulated in Conduct Rules. Accordingly any misconduct on his/her conduct is liable for penalty. The various procedures to be adopted before awarding punishment for misconduct are enumerated under CCS (CCA) Rules 1965. The lawmakers have embodied adequate protection to the workforce to ensure that innocent and honest errors in judgment are not penalized.

4.    How and when a charge sheet could be issued, where a detailed enquiry is mandatory and what are the privileges available to charged official to prove his innocence are well enumerated in CCS (CCA) Rules 1965. But as is in vogue the officers tend to trespass the protection and inflict punishments which shake the conscience of common man even trifle omissions and commissions to highlight their ego and supremacy. But the judicial system in India has quite often come to the rescue of affected workmen to establish what natural justice is and what amount to violation of natural justice in departmental enquiry.

Role of Defence Assistant

5.    The rules provide for the charged official to take the help of a Defence Assistant. This facility is indeed a boon. This form the part of the reasonable opportunity enshrined in the constitution to a civil servant. A person in distress is seldom fit to defend himself in the long drawn process of inquiry. It may be noted that even a good surgeon does not do an operation on himself. A Defence Assistant is one who is thorough with departmental rules and regulations. He should possess a fair knowledge of the subtleties of examination and cross examination of witnesses as in criminal trials.   A person who comes forward to help his colleagues in trouble gets the necessary training only though experience.

6.    The Service Associations should mobilise more persons in this line and train them so that they could help fellow employees in distress. The Branch/Divisional Secretaries should play a vital role to safeguard the interest of members when perverse officers tend to demoralize the workmen with their sadist actions/orders. For this it is necessary that at least the office bearers of the union are well conversant with rules and procedures. These men should thereby invoke confidence among his colleagues to combat the onslaught from the officers. The role of Defence Assistant is to protect the interest of the charged officer and to ensure fair play in domestic enquiry.

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