Monday, 30 November 2015

Two Studies Commissioned by 7th Central Pay Commission

On the website of 7th CPC ( are the following studies, too voluminous to reproduce here: -

Study by IDSA on Defence Expenditure & Defence Pensions (about 125 pages + Appendices), and

Study by IIM, Ahmedabad on Comparison of Government Sector vis-a-vis Central Public Sector Undertakings & Private Sector (320 pages).

Happy Reading

(P.S: might also tell  us how much of the vituperation that Shri D K Rai mentioned by Chairman 7 CPC, really deserves).        

Friday, 27 November 2015

Views of MoD on JSM Sought On?

Views of the MoD Sought 
The Commission has been presently undertaking tours to interact with and obtain feedback from various stakeholders across the country. The considered views of the MoD on certain key issues relating amongst others to pay, parity and related issues that have been raised by various segments are sought.
Parity and related issues

Grant of NFU to Defence Forces: In the JSM, ‘the Defence Services have contended that while the 6 CPC, in its Report, extended Non-Functional Upgradation to organised Group 'A' services and the Government, at the, implementation, stage, extended the benefit of NFU to all organised Group A services including IPS and IFS  officers, such benefit was not granted to the Defence Officers, which, in their view is an anomaly. It has been contended by the Defence Services that the grant, of NFU to organised Group A services in MoD which operate alongside the Defence Forces like MES, Border Road Organization, Survey of India etc. has created command, control and functional problems. The views of the Ministry of Defence on the issue of NFU, in the context of what has been stated by the Defence Services are sought.

Relativities - Armed Forces, Civilians, CAPFs: The civilian side has six levels starting from Under Secy upto Secretary while the Armed Forces have nine ranks, starting from Lieutenant to General. Given that some bunching is inevitable, the Ministry's views on issues of command and control functions/relativities of armed forces vis-à-vis CAPFs and civilians same may kindly be shared with the Commission.

Placement of Lt. Generals in HAG + scales: Defence Service's in their memorandum before the Seventh Central Pay Commission have identified the existing placement of Lt. Generals and equivalent as one of the “core anomalies”. They have sought placing of Lt. General and equivalent officers in the HAG + scale (Rs 75,500- 80,000). Considering the overall implications of this request made, the Ministry of Defence may like to communicate their views on this point.
Pay & allowances related

 Rank Pay: In the JSM the Services have contended that their Grade Pay in the Sixth Pay Commission has been artificially depressed as Rank Pay was not taken into consideration while determining the top of the pay scales of various ranks. It is, however gathered that the prevailing principle has been that rank pay cannot be merged with pay scales.

Pay of Lt, Colonels and Colonels: The view of the MoD with regard to the contention in the Joint Services Memorandum that that pay fixation of the Colonel should be done as per Fitment Table for S-25 (of the Fifth CPC) is also sought.

 Equal Work and Equal Pay: Various Defence Civilian Groups and associations in their representation to the Pay Commission have stated that the concept of “Equal work and equal pay” as enunciated by Para 10 of Army Instruction dated 4th December 1923 is getting violated in their case while working alongside with Service personnel in various organizations of the MOD as the latter are paid more pay and allowances for executing the same job compared to then civilian counterparts. To reinforce the point it has been pointed out that while the Executive Engineer (Senior Time Scale/ Junior Administrative grade) currently draws pay and allowances of Rs 68,000 per month, his defence counterpart viz. Major/ Lt. Colonel draw pay and allowances of Rs 1,34,c000 per-month while being co-located. They have-also questioned financial propriety of getting same work done at higher cost by service personnel. The Commission may kindly be apprised of the facts in this regard and the approach of the Ministry in this regard.

Trade Rationalisation: The Services, in the Joint Services Memorandum to the Pay Commission (in Para 4.1.16 to 4.1.27), have sought upgradation to Group X from revised Group Y on fulfilling ether (i) completion of 8/12/15 years of service or (ii) successful completion of diploma of minimum one year duration or minimum one year of organised training at the level of unit which may be cumulative and not necessarily continuous. What is the view of the Ministry on this pay upgradation proposal of the Services? 

Common Pay Scale for each service like JCOs/OR: The Services, in the Joint Services Memorandum to the Pay Commission, have raised the issue of Common Pay Scale for all in service pre 2006 JCOs/ORs of the three services. They have stated that in terms of the recommendations of the Sixth CPC there has been a re-organization of JCOs/OR in two groups (X and Y) from earlier existing three groups (X, Y and Z) by upgrading the entry level minimum qualification of the Z group from Matriculation to 10+2 and merging it with the Y group. Further, groups X and Y have been given a common pay scale since 01.01.2006 i.e same notches in PB-1 & 2 and same grade pay, with one distinguishing element of pay viz., X-pay to the X group, it is stated that the implementation of this recommendation by the Government has resulted in situations where seniors in Y group, earlier drawing more total pay compared to juniors in X group are now drawing less pay. In order to resolve such cases, the Services have suggested that pay of all group Y and Z JCO/OR who joined prior to 1.1.2006 should be fixed in Fifth CPC pay scales of X group and the pay so fixed may then be mapped into Sixth CPC common pay scales It is understood that the matter relating to Common Pay Scales for in-service JCO/OR is a matter that is under the examination of the Ministry of Defence. The final outcome of such examination may kindly be intimated to Pay Commission.
10.    Civilianization of certain organizations under the Ministry: It has been brought to the attention of the Commission that certain organizations under the MoD or branches therein are carrying out functions which are entirely or to a substantial degree of a civilian nature. Some examples of these are the MES, Accounts Branch of Air Force etc. In this regard the 5th CPC recommended the gradual civilianization inter alia of the MES, Accounts branch of Air Force. The Commission may kindly be apprised of the view of the Ministry in this regard.

11. NFU and One Rank one Pension: The NFU provides that whenever any IAS officer of the State or Joint Cadre is posted at the Centre to a particular grade carrying a specific Grade Pay in PB 3 or PB 4, the members of service, who are senior to such IAS officer by two years or more and have not so far been promoted to that grade, shall be appointed to the same grade on non-functional basis from the date of-posting of the IAS officer in that particular grade. In the JSM, the Defence Services have sought granting of NFU to the Defence Officers. NFU will involve upgrading the concerned officer to a scale of pay which is at the next higher level.

The proposed scheme of OROP envisages uniform pension to be paid to the Armed Forces personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service irrespective of their date of retirement. In this context has the Ministry taken a view on how the pension of officers would get regulated if the demand for NFU which entails a higher NFU over and above the existing rank (and correspondingly pay of the next higher rank), is accepted?

12.   Participation of Defence Forces in CSS: In the JSM, the Defence Services have sought to include Defence Forces as one of the participating services for appointment to posts of Director and above in the Central Govt under CSS, as admissible to All India Services and Group ‘A’ Services. The Commission may kindly be apprised of the view of the Ministry in this regard.

13.    Superannuation age of PBORs: With regard to PBORs, it has been observed that the age of superannuation in the Army, Navy and Air Force varies widely in equivalent ranks. Annex A brings out the position. Is the Ministry engaged in any review/rationalization of the age of superannuation of PBORs for the three Services? What is the existing international practice with regard to the superannuation of similarly placed personnel among the Defence Forces in comparable countries?

14.    Lateral Entry of service personnel in Defence Civilian Organizations and CAPFs: A scheme for lateral shift of Armed Forces personnel to CAPF and Defence Civilian Organizations was envisaged in Para 2.4.6 of the Report of the 6 CPC. In the JSM, the Defence Services, have stated that despite positive recommendations of CPCs and endeavours of the Govt in the past for lateral movement of defence personnel, neither the policy on the subject has been enunciated nor has the implementation been effected. Services in their JSM has demanded implementation of said proposition and stated, that lateral entry would make career of SC Officers and JCOs/OR attractive and results in saving to Govt on account of training and pension, The Commission may kindly be apprised of the view of the MoD in this regard.
Additional Information:
MoD has been requested to furnish the following data / information to the Pay Commission:

The sanctioned strength in the three services may kindly be furnished.

The Sanctioned strength of service personnel as on 01.01.2014 in various branches of the Defence Forces may kindly be furnished.

 Field posting period as a percentage of entire service in various branches of Defence Forces may kindly be furnished.

ln response to Secretary 7th CPC’s letter of 2 May 2014 seeking information on personnel, Posting Profile of personnel (in all groups) in various branches of Defence Forces as on 01.01.2014, may kindly be furnished

Number of permanent moves for officers in the entire career may kindly be furnished.

 Defence versus Civilian personnel in various Branches of the Armed Forces as on 01.01.2014 may kindly be furnished.

List of training institutions in the Defence Services by order of importance for tri-services and individually for the services may kindly be furnished.

Training Institution(s) tasked with training and Induction of Officers in each Armed Forces may be indicated.

16.  In addition to the specific points raised in this letter, you may additionally like to communicate the view of the MoD on any other important issue in the Memorandum to the Commission, so that, the Commission receives the benefit of the views of the Ministry on all issues it (Ministry) deems important in the Memorandum.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Relevant Portions of IAF’s Remedy of 2013 to No Funeral Allowance

Relevant Portions of IAF’s Remedy to No Funeral Allowance

Tele: 23010231/5187
Dte of Org (Cer)
Air HQ (VB)
New Delhi – 110 106

Air HQ/99706/Org (Cer)                                                               26 Mar 13

HQ Command (For SOA/SAASO)    



1.         IAF has adequate welfare measures in place to support the NoK of deceased Air Veterans. However, no scheme exists to carry out the last rites of Air Veterans in a dignified manner.


2.         The scheme would be applicable to all Air veterans i.e. Officers, Airmen and NCs(E) who are authorised a canteen card/PPO.

The Procedure

3.         The NoK are expected to inform the news of demise to SWO/Adjt/A Adm O. On receipt of information of the demise of an Air Veteran, the nearest Air Force Station (under whose municipal limits the funeral is planned) is to detail a representative of appropriate seniority (same or one rank lower). The detailed representative shall: -

            (a)       Contact the family of the deceased to ascertain funeral details.

            (b)       Inform the AOC/Stn Cdr about the funeral plans.

(c)       AOC/Stn Cdr is to ensure that the detailed representative is accompanied by adequate number of personnel, attend the funeral, drape the coffin/bier with IAF Ensign and lay a wreath on behalf of the CAS. Before the cremation/burial, the IAF Ensign is to be removed, correctly folded and handed over to the NoK (if so desired) or otherwise brought back to the Stn/Unit. 

(d)       The nearest Air Force Station (within municipal limits) is also to provide a grant of Rs 7500/- from SI for the funeral arrangements to the NoK. Amount would be subsequently  reimburses to the SI by IAFBA.

(e)       In cases where the funeral is planned in fringes near the municipal limits of the nearest Air Force Stations, the AOC/Stn is the final authority to decide on the details of assistance to be provided depending on availability of resources at the Station.

(f)        In cases of funeral planned outside the municipal limits of the nearest AF Station, the NoK is to seek the grant of Rs 75000/- directly from IAFBA. All such claims shall be duly supported by the following documents: - 

                        (i)        A written information of death by the widow/NoK.

(ii)       A copy of PPO/cory of URC card duly attested by a gazetted officer/sarpanch etc.

(iii)      A copy of death certificate duly attested by a gazetted officer/sarpanch of the Village Panchayat, as applicable.

4.         The OIC Samvedna Cell (Adjt) and SWO of the Stn/Unit would ensure that the procedure as mentioned is correctly followed. OIC Samvedna Cell (Adjt) is to intimate by signal the demise of Air Veteran to the Dte of Air Veterans and IAFBA………………………..

Air Vice Marshal
ACAS (Org & C)

What 7 CPC has recommended about NFU for easy reading

Grant of Non Functional Upgradation (NFU) 
to Defence Service Officers

6.2.33. In the Joint Services Memorandum, the Defence Services have pointed out that the VI CPC, in its Report, extended Non-Functional Upgradation (NFU) to Organised Group ‘A’ Services. Such benefit was however not granted to the Defence Service Officers, which, in their view is an anomaly. It has been pointed out by the Defence Services that the grant of NFU to Organised Group ‘A’ Services in Ministry of Defence which operate alongside the defence forces like MES, Border Road Organisation, and Survey of India etc. has created command, control and functional problems.

Analysis and Recommendations

6.2.34. The deliberations in the context of whether NFU, presently available to Organised Group ‘A’ services, should be allowed to continue or not have been elaborated in Chapter 7.3. The aspect of grant of Non-functional upgradation to officers of the Defence Forces was also discussed at length. After considering the various aspects the Chairman felt that NFU should be allowed to continue since it has existed for the last 10 years and is being availed by all the Organised Group ‘A’ Services. Therefore the Chairman did not propose to abolish it.

6.2.35. Further, with a view to ameliorate the difficulties faced by the officers owing to stagnation at various levels, the Chairman felt that NFU should be extended to the officers of the Defence Forces and CAPFs (including ICG) as well. The manner in which NFU is to be regulated in the Defence Forces is discussed in Chapter 11.22.

6.2.36.        Shri Vivek Rae and Dr. Rathin Roy, Members, Seventh CPC, have not agreed with the views of the Chairman. They are of the considered view that NFU till SAG and HAG level, granted to Organised Group ‘A’ Services, should be withdrawn. They have also not supported extension of NFU to Defence Forces and CAPFs, including ICG. The rationale for their views has been elaborated in paras 7.3.29 and 7.3.30 of the Chapter 7.3 on Central Services, Group ‘A’ and is not being repeated here.

Non-functional Upgradation

7.3.18 To address the wide disparity existing between the promotional avenue available to different Organised Group `A’ Services and to bring about some sort of “modified parity” between the IAS and other Central Group` A’ Service the VI CPC had recommended the grant of higher pay scale on non-functional basis to officers belonging to batches of Organised Group `A’ Services which were senior by two years as compared to the batch of IAS empanelled at the Centre. As per extant orders, whenever an IAS Officer of any state is posted to the centre to a particular grade carrying a specific grade pay in Pay Band 3 or Pay Band 4, the officers belonging to batches of the Organised Group `A’ Services that are senior by two years or more and have not so far been promoted to that particular grade would be granted the same grade on non-functional basis from the date of posting of the IAS Officer in that particular grade at the Centre. Such upgradation is not vacancy–linked and the benefit in pay is purely personal to the officer.

7.3.19. While this has no doubt afforded a limited quantum financial upgradation, and a few attendant benefits by way of entitlement to a higher type of house etc., such non-functional upgradation does not bestow any right to the officer to claim promotion or deputation benefits. However, what was seen as a partial curative measure, with the expectation that the real issue would be addressed through better management of the various cadres, has not really come about. Instead the situation is that the demand for grant of NFU has now become a wider chorus, with officers of the Defence forces and the CAPFs also claiming a like benefit. The demands of the CAPFs and the Defence forces have been discussed in detail in Chapters 11.22 and 6.2 respectively.

7.3.20. The issue with regard to the grant of NFU was deliberated in the Commission. The issue was whether NFU presently available to Organised Group `A’ Services should be allowed to continue or not and whether it should be extended to the Defence forces and CAPFs or not.

7.3.21. After considering various aspects, especially the difficulties faced by the officers owing to stagnation at various levels, the Chairman is of the considered opinion that NFU should be allowed to continue. Since NFU has been in existence for the last ten years and is being availed by all the Organised Group `A Services, there is no reason to abolish it. The same will be available not only to all Organised Central Group `AServices but also members of CAPFs and Defence forces on the basis of respective residency periods.

7.3.22. The NFU should be subject to the completion of the prescribed residency period in the preceding substantive grade and not linked to the promotion of an IAS batch. All the prescribed eligibility criteria and promotional norms including ‘benchmark’ for upgradation to a particular level would have to be met at the time of grant of NFU. A screening committee chaired by the Secretary of the Ministry concerned would oversee the implementation of NFU. The Committee would consist of three members of at least one level above the level for which upgradation is being considered. These orders are currently also in existence.

7.3.23. On grant of NFU, the pay fixation of the officer concerned will happen through a two-stage process:

Step 1: Initially one increment to be added to the existing pay, which takes the person on to the next cell in the current level in which he/she resides.

Step 2: The figure closest to this amount is to be located in the next promotional level and the pay fixed in that step. No fixation in pay will take place when the substantive promotion is earned in that level subsequently.

7.3.24. Further, to ameliorate the stagnation in various services, the Chairman recommends that officers drawing NFU would also be eligible to apply for deputation posts in the higher grade through empanelment in the Central Staffing Scheme as well as to posts outside the Central Staffing Scheme.

7.3.25 Shri.Vivek Rae, and Dr.Rathin Roy, Members, Seventh CPC have not agreed with the view of the Chairman. Shri Vivek Rae has elaborated the case for withdrawal of NFU from Organised Group `AServices as below:

a) In order to address the wide disparity in career progression across different Organised Group `AServices (Central Services) and to bring about some parity between the IAS and Organised Group `AServices, the VI CPC had recommended grant of a higher pay scale on non-functional (NFU) basis as per details brought out in para 7.3.18. NFU is presently available to IPS, IFoS and Organised Group `AServices till SAG and HAG level after a gap of two years compared to an IAS officer of the same batch who is posted at the Centre at the SAG or HAG level. The Chairman, Seventh CPC has proposed to dilute these provisions by linking NFU with “residency” period and removing the two year gap vis-à-vis IAS officers. The Chairman, Seventh CPC has also proposed to extend the NFU dispensation to Defence Forces and CAPFs.

b) After considering the matter carefully, the undersigned is of the view is that instead of further relaxing provisions relating to NFU and expanding the scope, NFU dispensation approved by the Government of India pursuant to recommendations of the VI CPC needs to be withdrawn for the following reasons: In the normal course, career progression in a cadre or service depends on the functions assigned to the service, which in turn dictates the shape of the organization structure, including the steepness of the pyramid. “An organisation is a set of roles graded in authority,” and as the saying goes, “Form follows Function.” Some services have a large base and a steep pyramid, as is the case with the Defence Forces, the CAPFs and some of the slow moving Organised Group `AServices, especially the Technical and Engineering services. There are other Group `AServices which have a high level interface with stakeholders and, therefore, enjoy more rapid career progression in view of a larger number of posts available at SAG level and above. Such services include the Indian Foreign Service. A cursory look at the list of 49 Organised Group `AServices indicates the wide variety of roles and responsibilities envisaged for these services, ranging from the Indian Foreign Service, the Indian Postal Service, the five Accounts services, Indian Revenue Service (IT), the thirteen Engineering services under the Railways, CPWD, Telecom, Power, Water and Defence Forces, the Indian Naval Armament Service, Central Architect Service, Indian Inspection Service, Indian Ordinance Factories Service, three Health Services, Geological Survey of India, Defence Aeronautical Quality Assurance Service, Defence Quality Assurance Service, Survey of India, Group `A’ Service, Indian Broadcasting (Programme) Service and Central Labour Service (illustrative list). To strive for uniform career progression across such a diverse set of services and cadres, with widely varying functions, violates fundamental management principles relating to organisational structures. Such a dispensation, with automatic career progression till HAG level, completely buries the concept of merit based career progression and undermines considerations of efficiency and accountability. In effect, the present policy dispensation converts already weak organizational pyramids in Organised Group `AServices into broad cylinders, when in fact, considerations of efficiency and accountability require that the existing cylinders be converted into steeper pyramids.

c) Linking career progression in all Organised Group `AServices and IPS/IFoS with IAS is based on highly fallacious notions of parity and fair play. As the Hon’ble Supreme Court has pointed out in Mohan Kumar Singhania versus Union of India and others in the judgement delivered on 13 September, 1991, “the selection for IAS, IFS and IPS, Group `A’ services and Group `B’ services are made by a combined competitive examination and viva-voce test. There cannot be any dispute that each service is a distinct and separate cadre, having its separate field of operation, with different status, prospects, pay scales, the nature of duties, the responsibilities to the post and conditions of service, etc. Therefore, once a candidate is selected and appointed to a particular cadre, he cannot be allowed to say that he is at par with others on the ground that all of them were selected by a combined competitive examination and viva-voce test and that the qualifications prescribed are comparable. In our considered view, the classification of the present case is not based on artificial inequalities but is hedged within the salient features and truly founded on substantial differences. Judged from this point of view, it seems to us, impossible to accept the submission that the classification rests on an unreal and unreasonable basis and that it is arbitrary and absurd.” The Hon’ble Supreme Court has set out the position with great force and clarity. Seeking uniform career progression for all Organised Group `AServices and IPS/ IFoS on par with IAS on grounds of parity and equal treatment is, therefore, simply not tenable. Seeking uniform career progression even among Organised Group `AServices till the highest levels in the hierarchy is also not tenable. The principle of “equality of opportunity” cannot be stretched to mean “equality of outcomes.”

d) Prior to the VI CPC, the scheme for time bound promotion was broadly uniform across All India services, Organised Group `AServices and the Defence Forces in that three time bound promotions were available at Senior Time Scale, Junior Administrative Grade and Selection Grade in the first 13 years of service. Officers of the All India Services and Organised Group `AServices reached the selection grade (GP-8700) in 13 years while the equivalent progression in the Defence Forces was till the level of Lt. Col. (GP-8000) in 13 years. Officers in the Defence Forces were able to reach GP-8700 in the rank of Col. (Selection Scale) in 15 years (“residency” period) with the remaining Lt. Cols. reaching the Col. (Time Scale) in 26 years. (It may be noted that complete parity between the Defence Forces and civil services has never been possible because of the steep rank structure and additional ranks in the officer cadre in the Defence Forces).

e) All promotions beyond GP-8700 in the Defence Forces and the civil services to higher levels were subject to availability of vacancies in the respective cadre. This broad parity was disturbed by granting NFU to IPS, IFoS and Organised Group `AServices after the VI CPC report, without a similar dispensation being extended to the Defence Forces. Consequently, the Defence Forces officers, who are in no way lower in status or responsibility than Group `ACentral Services, though not classified as such, have fallen steeply behind IPS/IFoS and 49 Organised Group `AServices. This has undermined the status and morale of the Defence Forces and has been a matter of serious concern for them over the last decade. As the Defence Forces have pointed out in their joint service memorandum (JSM), the Defence Forces face an acute problem of stagnation because of their rank structure, and if there was a case for NFU at SAG and HAG level, it should have been given to the Defence Forces before anybody else. In fact, the policy out-come was the reverse, whereby the less disadvantaged Organised Group `AServices reaped the maximum benefit on untenable grounds of parity withIAS. The undersigned agrees with the view that exclusion of Defence forces from NFU has been unfair. The gap between career progression in the Defence forces in comparison with 49 Organised Group ‘A’ Services and IPS/IFoS, which was already large, has been stretched beyond reasonable limits (emphasis supplied by Aerial View).

f) In their JSM, the Defence Forces have asked that NFU be extended to Defence service officers, mutatis-mutandis. Prior to extension of NFU to Defence Forces, they have suggested that the Grade pay of officers be revised as under:

S. No
Existing Grade pay ()
Proposed Grade pay

Lieutenant Colonel

[Spelling mistakes corrected by Aerial View]

g) The matter regarding higher grade pay for Defence Forces officers has been examined and it has not been possible to agree to the demand for higher grade pay, as elaborated in Chapter 6.2. Consequently, the grant of NFU cannot be considered, mutatis mutandis. In their supplementary memorandum, the Defence Forces have further recommended that the grade pay for Defence Forces officers be determined by delinking it from rank and linking it with the length of service. Defence Forces have pointed out that beyond the rank of Col., due to adverse cadre ratio, Defence Forces officers attain higher grade pay much later than their civilian counterparts. For example, Defence Forces officers get the GP 10,000/- (Joint Secretary/SAG) at 32 years of service (0.60 percent officers get this) as against 18-20 years of service in respect of IAS and Organised Group `AServices (100 percent officers get this). Majority of Defence Forces officers retire at much lower grade pay compared to their civilian counterparts. They have accordingly proposed that a Defence Forces officer should get the same grade pay as the civil service officer gets for the same length of service. This would imply grant of SAG scale for the same batch of Defence Forces officers on par with Organised Group `AServices, in the same time duration (i.e 18-20 years).

h) The Defence Forces have stated that they fully meet the attributes of an Organised Group `AService, promulgated by DoPT, and there is no basis for denying them NFU simply on the ground that they are not classified as an Organised Group `AService.

i) The Defence Forces have also highlighted that they have lost status in a multi-cadre involvement with respect to the following Organised Group `AServices with whom the Defence Forces have a close interface (officers of Defence Forces are also deputed to these organizations):

i. Indian Naval Armament Service;
ii. Indian Ordnance Factories Service;
iii. Indian Defence Service of Engineers (MES);
iv. Defence Aeronautical Quality Assurance Service;
v. Defence Quality Assurance Service;
vi. Defence Research and Development Service
vii. Survey of India Group `A’ Service
viii. Border Roads Organization.

j) Defence Forces have further pointed out that while they have time bound promotion till GP 8700 (Colonel), the glaring difference with the civil services is that the Col. Rank (Selection grade) (GP-8700) is achieved at 16-21 years of service (even though “residency” period is 15 years) while Colonel (time scale) reaches this in 26 years. In comparison, officers of Organised Group `AServices reach GP 8700 in half the time i.e., 13 years. The pyramid is much steeper in the Defence services at higher levels.

k) The proposal of the Defence Forces to delink grant of NFU from rank and link it with length of service can be considered in several ways:-
i. Option-I: If NFU is granted to Defence Forces officers on par with Organised Group `AServices, it would imply sanctioning SAG scale to all Defence Forces officers of a particular batch in the same timeframe as available for officers of Organised Group `AServices. Consequently, all Defence Forces officers of each batch would get SAG scale in about 18-20 years, regardless of the “residency” period for SAG scale. It is only in this manner that full parity can be established between the Defence Forces and Organised Group `AServices. However, this would imply that officers of Lieutenant Colonel rank with 13 years of service and Colonel rank (selection scale) with 15 years of service would get SAG scale in 18-20 years, thereby resulting in a triple promotion for Lieutenant Colonels and a double promotion for Colonels(Selection scale). The principle of merit based selection for Colonel (Selection scale) and also for higher levels would also be undermined. This would wreak havoc with the rank structure in the Defence Forces and is clearly not a tenable proposition. In no organisation can pay be delinked completely from rank.

ii. Other options: The other options available will not serve to bring Defence Forces officers on par with Organised Group `AServices. For instance, if grant of NFU is linked with “residency” period, (i.e) qualifying service in the next lower post, then Lieutenant Colonels (time scale) would get Colonel’s scale in 26 years, as they presently do. They would not be eligible for Brigadier’s scale since only Colonel (selection scale) is eligible for promotion as Brigadier, a position for which Lieutenant Colonel (time scale) has not been found fit. All Colonels (selection scale) would be eligible for pay scale of Brigadier after 23 years on completion of the “residency” period. This would obliterate the distinction between Colonels selected for the rank of Brigadier on substantive basis from Colonels overlooked, and would undermine the principle of merit based progression in the armed forces. Similarly, all Brigadiers would get SAG scale in 25 years after completion of the “residency” period, while only a select few would pick up the rank of Major General in about 32 years. This would again undermine merit based promotions in the Defence Forces, and create a false sense of parity based on pay scales. From the above, it is evident that the earliest a Defence Forces officer can get SAG scale is in 26 years (that too for a select few) compared to 18-20 years in Organised Group `AServices (sought to be further reduced to 17 years). Grant of NFU to Defence Forces officers, keeping in view the rank structure and “residency” period would, therefore, continue to perpetuate the disparity between Defence Forces officers and Organised Group `AServices. This disparity can never be bridged unless option-I is considered. The same logic applies to CAPFs.

l) The special problems that the Defence Forces face with regard to the eight Organised Group `AServices, with whom they have a close interface, also cannot be resolved under the existing NFU dispensation. At the same time, the dissonance between the Defence Forces and these 8 Organised Group `AServices, as well as the adverse impact on command and control, is clearly an undesirable and unacceptable outcome which has lowered the morale and status of Defence Forces officers. Such a situation cannot be allowed to continue. The only way in which some semblance of parity can be restored is by withdrawing NFU from Organised Group `AServices.

m) It is clear that the idea of linking NFU for the Defence forces with the “residency” period does not bring the Defence forces on par with Organised Group `AServices. Even otherwise, the idea of linking NFU with the “residency” period is untenable. In the case of CRPF (CAPF), the “residency” period for IG scale is 24 years. On this basis, officers in CAPFs will pick up the SAG scale in 24 years as compared to 25 years for Defence Forces. In the case of IAS/ IPS/IFoS, the residency period for SAG scale is 16 years/ 18 years/18 years. For HAG scale the residency period is 25 years. In the case of Organised Group `AServices, the residency period is 17 years for SAG scale, 20 years for HAG scale, 21 years for HAG+ scale and 22 years for Apex scale, as per DoPT O.M. dated 12 March, 2010. Consequently, an officer in a fast moving Organised Group `AService could well get HAG scale in 20 years compared to 25 years for IAS/IPS/IFoS. Since empanelment under CSS is proposed to be linked with “residency” period, officers of fast moving Organised Group `AServices could also claim to be empanelled at HAG level in 20 years. None of the above outcomes is acceptable on the basis of well established relativities of the civil service structure. The basis for fixing “residency” period is arbitrary across services, and bears no relationship with actual career progression in different services. Even otherwise, the “residency” period only indicates the minimum qualifying service required to move to the next level. It can by no means be construed to be an automatic trigger for moving to the next level. The concept of “residency” period therefore cannot provide a valid basis for grant of NFU.

n) The main impact of NFU on Organised Group `AServices has been accelerated financial progression by delinking pay scale from rank. The case for this accelerated financial progression beyond the level of NFSG (Director) is weak, considering that Director level functionaries across all services, including the Defence Services and CAPFs, were the biggest gainers from the pay hike announced by GoI after submission of the VI CPC report. Director level functionaries received a pay hike of 56.3 percent compared to Deputy Secretary (16.4%) and Joint Secretary (7.5%). This was a veritable bonanza awarded by GoI at the Director level (GP-8700). In addition, GoI sanctioned a liberal regime for increments at the rate of 3 percent per annum (compounded) within expanded pay bands. This regime enables Director level functionaries to reach the SAG scale through passage of time, even if they do not get any further promotion. In this situation, there was no case for further financial upgradation in a time bound manner through NFU, till the level of SAG and HAG (emphasis by Aerial View).

o) In the view of the undersigned, it was a mistake to grant NFU to 49 Organised Group `AServices, IPS and IFoS till HAG level on untenable grounds of parity with IAS. Exclusion of Defence forces and CAPFs only aggravated the mistake. This mistake will be further aggravated by extending NFU to Defence forces and CAPFs as proposed by Chairman, Seventh CPC in para 7.3.21. The domino effect of such a dispensation on unorganised Group `AServices, Group `BServices and Group `CServices would follow, with demands for NFU already being raised by some of these groups. Further, it would not be long before the last bastion (i.e.,) Apex scale is breached by the NFU juggernaut on grounds of parity with the IAS. This would certainly merit mention as a world record for career progression in government bureaucracies (emphasis by Aerial View).

p) The rationale for rejecting grant of NFU till SAG and HAG level to Defence Forces has been explained by Ministry of Defence as: 

“The issue was examined in the Ministry by a Committee headed by the Cabinet Secretary. The Committee in its report which was accepted by the government has noted that the service conditions of Defence Forces are quite different from those of civilian employees. Benefits in the form of Military Service Pay and various allowances are also available to the Defence Forces officers which are not available to civilian officers. It is, therefore, not logical to compare the earnings of two services. Further, Defence Forces officers are covered by a separate time bound promotion scheme upto the level of Colonel. The scheme of non-functional upgradation is applicable only for Organised Group `AServices and was extended to IPS/IFS. The requirements related to command and control, the norms for recruitment, promotion and the rank structure of the Defence Forces are not identical to those of Group `A’ cadres. The average age of entry of Commissioned Officers is lower than that of those joining Group `A’ Services. In view of the above, the Committee did not make any recommendation on this issue.”  

The above rationale applies equally to 49 Organised Group `AServices who have been extended NFU. The requirements related to command and control, the norms for recruitment, promotion and the rank structure in the 49 Organised Group `AServices can vary widely, depending on the functions performed by each service. These 49 Organised Group `AServices simply cannot be painted with the same brush. The rationale for rejection of NFU for Defence Forces, therefore, applies equally to the 49 Organised Group `AServices. Further, the average age of entry has no bearing on this matter since the vast majority of officers of Defence Forces also retire much earlier (emphasis by Aerial View).

q) After careful consideration of the matter and evaluation of various options, the undersigned is of the view that NFU at SAG and HAG levels should be withdrawn from all Organised Group `AServices and the status quo ante prevailing prior to the VI CPC restored. All promotions beyond NFSG (Director) level (Grade pay 8700) should be based on availability of vacancies and there should be no non-functional upgradation in any service beyond this level. Each service must progress as per its cadre structure and senior level positions and pay scales should not be available to everybody as a matter of course. Cadre reviews should be undertaken in respect of services which face slow career progression beyond NFSG level, and the problem addressed through better cadre management. In no organisation can pay be delinked completely from rank, with officers claiming entitlement to the highest pay scales without occupying the corresponding rank.

r) At best, Housing and Travel entitlements at SAG level should be given across the board to all services including Defence forces, CAPFs and unorganised Group `AServices, on completion of 25 years of service, in case SAG scale has not been granted on substantive basis by then. This will provide some relief to slow moving services like the Defence forces, CAPFs, and Technical Group `A’ Services, which are the most disadvantaged because of their steep pyramidal structures. Existing beneficiaries under the prevailing NFU dispensation may be allowed to avail the higher entitlements to Housing and Travel on a “personal” basis. Their salary may be fixed in the new pay matrix as per the relevant “fitment” factor (to ensure pay protection), but in replacement scales equivalent to scales they were drawing prior to grant of NFU. The other option is to give replacement scales based on NFU scales. GoI may take a view in the matter, as appropriate.”

7.3.26 Dr. Rathin Roy, Member, Seventh CPC has further elaborated the case for withdrawal of NFU as below:

a. In para 7.3.6 of the Chapter 7.3, the Commission noted that “there is pervasive feeling of inequity which is leading up to a sense of disenchantment.” To address this, a number of recommendations have been made by different Central Service Group `A’ associations on pay, career progression, employment etc. One of these pertains to Non- Functional Upgrade (NFU). The Chairman’s views on the subject have been recorded in paragraphs 7.3.21 to 7.3.24.

b. I, along with my colleague Mr. Vivek Rae, am in dissent with this view. While in complete agreement with his views on the matter, I wish to make the following additional observations to clarify the reasons for my dissent:

1. The Group-A Central Service officers as well as All India Service Officers are recruited at an entry level which corresponds to junior management. Through efflux of time, in 13 years, all officers so recruited who fulfil minimum performance and ethical standards and maintain discipline are guaranteed promotion to a level equivalent to the substantive rank of Director in the Government of India. Such time-bound and speedy career progression to upper middle management grade is extremely rare, if not unique, in Civil Services worldwide.

2. Over and above this rapid promotion, all Central Service Group-A officers are presently entitled to the same pay and allowances that a Joint Secretary to Government of India is entitled to, within two years of the substantive attainment of that rank at the centre by an officer of the IAS through NFU. The Chairman proposes to further extend this NFU from the senior administrative grade to the higher administrative grade for officers who put in requisite number of years. In practice, this would mean that all officers who have joined government sufficiently early would secure non substantive pay and allowances equivalent to the current HAG grade.

3. In my opinion the granting of NFU at the upper middle and upper levels of the civil service is detrimental to both efficiency and incentive based career progression. It is right and appropriate, as in the case of Armed Forces, that some pyramidal structure be maintained so that the pay and allowances drawn by officers are accorded for occupying a substantively higher level of responsibility. Selection for higher levels necessarily needs to be merit based, not seniority based. The NFU concept completely negates this (emphasis by Aerial View).

4. Most Group `A’ Central Services are already highly cylindrical in nature and therefore it is not the case that there exist limited opportunities to aspire to substantive promotions to HAG grade within these services. In any case, the appropriate instrument to design a career structure, and to allow for suitable career progression opportunities at the senior level consistent with the needs of the jobs done by different Group-A personnel, is the cadre review mechanism on which this report has deliberated at some length.

5. Common recruitment for different services does not mean an automatic entitlement to equity in career progression. In my view, there is no automatic entitlement or benchmarking of promotions in any specific service relative to any other service, whether Group-A Central Service or All India Services. If the above principle were not maintained, then in the interest of equity, it would be unacceptable to apply different principles to the Civil Services, Armed Forces, CAPFs and other Central paramilitary organisations. Indeed, the consequence of the Chairman’s recommendation is the automatic extension of the NFU to these branches of government as well. I strongly feel that this would be hugely detrimental to the efficiency of government and to improving the effectiveness and accountability of a system which is already facing severe challenges on this score, not least at the senior level. Since I agree with the principle of equality elaborated by the Chairman in paragraph 7.3.21, I cannot also support the continuity of the existing NFU for Group `ACentral Services.

6. Based on this reasoning I join the dissent of my colleague Mr. Vivek Rae and recommend that NFU at the Group `Alevel be completely done away with. 7. Given the relatively lower grade of entry at the Group `B, and `Clevels and limited opportunities for substantive promotions, I would like to emphasise that non-functional career progression opportunities like MACP and other systems recommended in this report be continued and this dissent be read as applied solely to Group `ACentral Services officers, All India Services officers and officer cadres in the Armed Forces, CAPFs and paramilitary organisations.”

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