Published On: Wed, Jan 6th, 2016

Finmin cracks the whip on bureaucrats’ foreign trips

New Delhi: Bureaucrats are having a tough time getting their foreign trips, with the Finance Ministry further tightening the rules for foreign travel.

Finance Minister Arun JaitleyPhoto: PTI

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley
Photo: PTI

The Finance Ministry has directed officials to try and keep foreign travel to a maximum — of just five days.

“The duration of the visit shall also be kept to the absolute minimum…Foreign visits shall not exceed five working days,” said fresh guidelines issued by the Finance Ministry’s Office Memorandum No.4(4)/E.Coord/2015 dated January 5.

Any foreign visit exceeding five working days or including more than five members in the delegation would be expected to be placed before the Screening Committee of Secretaries, said the guidelines.

All proposals have to be submitted to the the Screening Committee of Secretaries at least 15 days before departure.

To monitor the outcome of foreign visits, the Finance Ministry has also set up an online Foreign Visit Management System (FVMS) where nodal Ministries and Departments would be expected to provide details of all trips planned for the quarter.

“To optimise the outcome from foreign tours of officers, each Ministry and Department shall prepare a Quarterly Rolling Plan of proposed programmes and visits for the next three months,” the guidelines said, adding that only the essential foreign visits which cannot be avoided may be included.

Further, no officer would be expected to undertake more than four official visits annually.

Permission will have to be taken from the Prime Minister through the Screening Committee of Secretaries for visits by Secretary-level officials exceeding this limit.

Inputs with The Hindu

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