The Supreme Court’s direction that civil servants should have an assured minimum tenure has been welcomed by bureaucrats who said it would make a difference to people working at the field level and help them achieve their targets in a better manner.
The Supreme Court Friday directed the centre and the states to set up a Civil Services Board (CSB) for the management of transfers, postings, process of promotion, reward and disciplinary matters of civil servants.
The directions came on a public writ petition filed by a few senior civil servants, including former cabinet secretary T.S.R. Subramaniam.
The directions said bureaucrats should refrain from acting on verbal orders given by politicians except in exceptional cases and suggested a fixed tenure for them.
B.K. Agarwal, joint secretary, ministry of housing and urban poverty alleviation, said there were already instructions from the government emphasising the need for civil servants to obtain written instructions from political bosses.
“It is good that the court has reiterated it,” he said.
Agarwal said an assured minimum tenure posting will help a civil servant to plan and realise targets in a better way.
The apex court said fixed minimum tenure would not only enable the civil servants to achieve their professional targets, but also help them to function as effective instruments of public policy.
It said civil servants are not having stability of tenure at present, particularly in the state governments where transfers and postings are made frequently, at the whims and fancies of the executive head for political and other considerations and not in public interest.
It said necessity of minimum tenure has been endorsed and implemented by the central government.
A senior Delhi police official said the directions of court for minimum assured posting and that bureaucrats should not act on oral instructions of political leaders were “welcome”.
“At times, a bureaucrat gets postings of six months. Minimum assured posting will help improve quality of administration and enable officials to achieve their targets in a better manner,” he said.