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CHS Officers cannot be promoted only on basis of years of service without considering Recruitment Rules, provisions governing promotions: Delhi HC
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court has recently stated that Central Health Services Officers cannot be promoted in a mechanical manner without taking the employee's grading in the Annual Confidential Report (ACR) into account.In this regard, the HC division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad held that officers cannot be promoted under the Dynamic...
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court has recently stated that Central Health Services Officers cannot be promoted in a mechanical manner without taking the employee's grading in the Annual Confidential Report (ACR) into account.
In this regard, the HC division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad held that officers cannot be promoted under the Dynamic Assured Career Progression (DACP) scheme only based on the number of years of service completed by the employee not considering the Recruitment Rules and other provisions governing promotion in services.
"By no stretch of imagination can it be construed that under the DACP Scheme, an employee/ Associate Professor is entitled to be upgraded to the post of a Professor irrespective of his/her grading in the ACR, in a mechanical manner. There can never be a mechanical manner of upgradation, de hors the Recruitment Rules and other relevant provisions governing promotions in service, solely on the basis of completion of number of years of service," observed the bench.
The order from the High Court bench came while considering a plea challenging a decision passed by the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), Principal Bench, New Delhi.
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The concerned petitioners are members of the Central Health Services and they are governed under the Central Health Services Rules, 1996. After being selected by the Union Public Services Commission (UPSC), the petitioners were appointed in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, in the Grade of Assistant Professor (Specialist Grade II- Junior Scale) of the Teaching SubCadre in the Department of Pathology, Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi. Consequently, the petitioners were promoted to the Post of Associate Professor on 20.04.2001 and 10.01.2002.
Back in 2006 and 2007, the cases of the petitioners were considered for further promotion by the Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) under the Dynamic Assured Career Progression (DAPC) scheme. However, they were found unfit for promotion by the DPC.
Challenging this decision, the petitioners had approached CAT, which ultimately dismissed their plea back in 2008. Thereafter they had approached the High Court seeking relief.
Referring to the CAT order, the HC division bench held that the order passed by the Tribunal makes it very clear that the case of the Petitioners were considered for promotion in 2006 and 2007 under the DACP Scheme. However, since they did not have two “Very Good” gradings in their ACRs during the past last five years of their service, they were not promoted. Thereafter, on the basis of the DPC which met in the year 2008, they were promoted as they met the eligibility criteria for the grade of Professor.
At this outset, the bench referred to the DACP Scheme and noted,
"DACP Scheme makes it very clear that promotions are to be made without linkage to vacancies. Other conditions for effectuating promotions are to be governed by provisions of CHS Rules 1996 – as amended from time to time, and instructions issued by the DoP&T. It was the aforesaid criterion which was required to be considered for the purpose of promotion and considering suitability of an employee for the same under the DACP Scheme. It was a uniform criterion which was made applicable to all employees, including the Petitioners. Since the Petitioners did not have two “Very Good” gradings in their ACRs during the last five years of their service, the Petitioners had not been promoted to the next higher post."
"In the considered opinion of this Court, once the cases of the Petitioners were considered as per the DACP Scheme, and the Petitioners were not able to fulfill the eligibility criterion for promotion, the question of grant of relief to the Petitioners does not arise," held the bench.
Upholding the CAT order, the HC bench mentioned in the judgment,
"This Court is not able to find any illegality or infirmity in the order passed by the Ld. CAT. By no stretch of imagination can it be construed that under the DACP Scheme, an employee/ Associate Professor is entitled to be upgraded to the post of a Professor irrespective of his/her grading in the ACR, in a mechanical manner. There can never be a mechanical manner of upgradation, de hors the Recruitment Rules and other relevant provisions governing promotions in service, solely on the basis of completion of number of years of service. In the opinion of this Court, the aforesaid is what the Petitioners are attempting to canvass before us. Therefore, this Court does not find any reason to grant relief to the Petitioners."
To read the order, click on the link below:
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Barsha completed her MA from the University of Burdwan, West Bengal in 2018. Having a knack for Journalism she joined Medical Dialogues back in 2020. She mainly covers news about medico legal cases, NMC/DCI updates, medical education issues including the latest updates about medical and dental colleges in India. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.