BHUBANESWAR: Resentment is brewing among Odisha Administrative Service (OAS) officers due to inordinate delay in their promotion which is overdue for more than four months.
The Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) meeting supposed to be held every year depending on the consequential vacancy is yet to be convened this year despite large scale vacancies in posts of additional secretary, joint secretary and deputy secretary, leaving many officers fuming.
Though the meeting was scheduled to be held on September 29 for which all clearances of eligible officers were collected, it could not be held due to absence of some key members. Since then, the meeting has been delayed for unknown reasons.
If the DPC meeting is not held soon, the officers apprehended that it may be delayed further due to the code of conduct likely to be imposed for the ensuing panchayat elections.
Some officers alleged that IAS officers, who are at the helm of affairs, are responsible for the delay. Unlike the promotion of IAS officers, which is time bound till they become Principal Secretary, OAS officers’ promotion depends on vacancies.
An official on condition of anonymity said OAS officers are the backbone of the administration since they do most of the administrative work. ‘’While IAS officers get their promotion letters in time, no one bothers in the case of State cadre officers,’’ he said.
While works in different departments are hampered due to vacancies in key posts, delay in promotion has compounded the problem. The posts of additional district magistrate (ADM) and project director of DRDA in five districts are vacant.
‘’Though several posts are lying vacant and many deserving officers are awaiting promotion, delay in holding the DPC meeting, the only formality, has been hindering the process despite repeated demands from OAS officers’ association,’’ the official said.
President of OAS officers’ association Saroj Samal said 29 officers are waiting to be promoted to the rank of additional secretary and 32 each to the rank of joint secretary and deputy secretary.
‘’The promotion is overdue. It should have been done by now since the year is going to end. Ideally, the DPC meeting should be held in January every year,’’ he said.