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AOs miss CAO promotions due to CBEC delay

New Delhi: A number of Administrative officers (AOs) of group B gazetted, slated for a promotion to the post of Chief Accounts Officer (CAO), group A gazetted, had to retire before being elevated to the higher position as the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) had not cleared their files, which had been pending for the last ten months.

CBEC Chairman Najib Shah
CBEC Chairman Najib Shah

Officers belonging to the Ministerial cadre, who joined the Customs and Central Excise department after clearing Staff Selection Commission examinations, were due for a promotion since implementation of the CBEC cadre restructuring, October 15, 2014.

The sanctioned strength of CAO in CBEC was 155 and after the restructuring, it reaches 349.

Accordingly, 194 cadre restructuring and others regular vacancies for the year 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 are to be filled up through promotion from the post of Administrative officer.

An Administrative officer, who retired on July 31, said, “I waited till the last moment to retire as a group A officer. It’s very personal and emotional. I would have been proud of the elevated post for the rest of my life.”

He, who is upset with the delay. He is not the only one who seems to be bearing “the brunt”.

Another officer retired in June, missing his promotion. “I had been waiting for the promotion for nine months. After putting so many years in the service, we to retire at least as a group A Officer and consider it as a farewell gift from the government. But it’s unfortunate that no one bothers about us,” he rues

The officers, who did not till get promotion of Chief Accounts Officer alleging that only Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officers, Superintendent and Inspector cadre posts are well taken care by CBEC.

The all cadre of IRS Officers had got promotions after cadre restructuring on new created posts and getting hike pay.

The CBEC created 194 regular posts of the Chief Accounts officer and 2118 temporary posts of Assistant Commissioner (Both initial group A posts) under cadre restructuring.

Even then regular posts are lying vacant till date. However temporary posts (only for five years) were filled up from the post of superintendents in October 2014.

Accordingly, more than 2000 Superintendent were given ad-hoc promotions on ‘in-situ basis’ to the post of Assistant Commissioners, subsequently Inspectors were promoted to superintendents on ad-hoc basis.

The ministerial officials alleging that they are deprived from promotions others cadre also under cadre restructuring on the pretext of new Recruitment Rules.

The regret of the missed promotion is palpable in other ministerial cadre officials as well. An official said, “It gives us pride to introduce ourselves as Inspector to our colleagues but the department completely favors money earning sons, I mean revenue earnings.”

A senior officer in CBEC claimed that above 200 posts of CAO were vacant but even then, the CBEC did not clear the promotion files, delaying the matter for ten months for unknown reasons.


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