Decided on January 28,2011

G.S.R.K.R. Vijay Kumar And Ors. Appellant


R. Santhanam - (1.) HEARD Sri M. Ravindranath Reddy, learned Counsel for the applicant, Sri. G. Jayaprakash Babu, learned Senior Central Government Standing Counsel for Union of India, Mrs. G. Manjula, learned Standing Counsel for the Government of Andhra Pradesh and Sr. M.C. Jacob, learned Counsel representing Sri. B.N. Sharma, learned Standing Counsel for Union Public Service Commission. This OA has been filed impugning the action of the respondents in assigning 2001, 2002 and 2003 as years of allotment to the 1st to 5th applicants, 6th applicant and 7th applicant respectively, in the Andhra Pradesh Cadre of the Indian Administrative Service upon their promotion from the cadre of State Civil Services as illegal and arbitrary and consequently seeking a direction to the respondents to assign the years of allotment to which the applicants are entitled on the basis of the redetermined strength of the cadre vide notification No. 1311031/06/2008 -AIS.II(A) dated 18.12.2008 by treating the said cadre to have been revised in the year 2002 itself and accord all consequential benefits connected thereto except the arrears due, if any, towards monetary benefits.
(2.) THE applicants were recruited in the State Civil Services of Andhra Pradesh (SCS) as Dy. Collectors on 9.12.1993. It is their case that as per their entitlement vide Rule 4(b) and Rule 8 of Indian Administrative Services (Recruitment) Rules of 1954 read with IAS (Appointment by Promotion) Regulations, 1955, they became eligible for appointment to the vacancies in the IAS as on 1.1.2002 and subsequent years. The number of posts available for SCS Officers were 3, 1 & 1 respectively for the years 2002, 2003 and 2004. The applicants case was considered only in the year 2008 and they were included in the select list 2005 (applicants 1 to 5), 2006 (applicant No. 6) and 2007 (applicant No. 7). Four years weightage was given to them in accordance with the provisions contained in Rule 3(3)(ii) of IAS (Regulation of Seniority) Rules, 1987, and their year of allotment was determined as 2001 (for applicants 1 to 5), 2002 (applicant No. 6) and 2003 (applicant No. 7) respectively. The applicants grievance is that they had to wait till 2005 to get selected only for want of vacancies. If the exercise in finalizing the cadre review due after every five years as mandated under Rule 4(2) of IAS (Cadre) Rules, 1954 had been completed in time, additional vacancies would have been available and they would have got promoted earlier. The cadre review, due by July, 2002, which took six and half years and was completed in December, 2008, resulted in an increase of 33 posts of which nine were available for promotion from SCS. If these vacancies had been made available in 2002, the applicants would have been considered for promotion in 2002 itself and consequently they would have been assigned 1998 seniority. Stating that the delay in the conduct of quinquennial review of the cadre strength for the year 2002 and subsequent decision and notification of the same in the year 2008 is an infraction of law for which they are not responsible, the applicants have filed this OA seeking reassignment of their year of allotment as 1998 and consequential benefits except arrears if they, towards monetary benefits. The 1st respondent in his reply affidavit has submitted that the cadre review of IAS, AP cadre was ordinarily due in 2002 as the previous cadre review was conducted in the year 1997. The State Government of AP was requested by the Central Government time and gain to submit their cadre review proposal. However, after a lot of correspondence and preliminary meetings, a cadre review could be taken up on 2008 only which was finalized and notified on 18.12.2008. Additional nine posts of IAS against promotion quota were available due to this cadre review. The first respondent has further submitted that the cadre review of any cadre cannot be given retrospective effect on the following grounds: - - (i) Rule 4(2) of the IAS (Cadre) Rules, 1954 provides that the cadre review would be carried out ordinarily at the interval of five years meaning thereby that it is not necessary for the Governments to carry out the cadre review exactly on completion of five years. It may be before or after the five years. (ii) 1st proviso to Rule 4(2) of the IAS (Cadre) Rules empowers the Central Government to after the strength and composition of any cadre at any other time. (iii) The Cadre Review of any cadre is purely an administrative mechanism, whereby the cadre strength is not only increased, it may be decreased also. This should not be linked with the provision of promotional avenues to the eligible officers. (iv) Cadre Review does not mean merely determination of the vacancies. (v) The cadre reviews are carried out keeping in view the future administrative requirements of any State/cadre and they are definitely not carried out for providing promotional avenues to the eligible officers; thus cadre reviews cannot be given retrospective effect. The 1st respondent has further submitted that the applicants were considered in 2008 for their promotion to IAS against the vacancies available as on 1.1.2005 and were assigned the year of allotment as per rules.
(3.) THE 2nd respondent in his reply affidavit has stated that the Government of India has determined and confirmed the vacancies for preparation of select list for the year 2005, 2006 and 2007 as five, four and six respectively. The applicants' names were considered for inclusion in the select list for the said years at the meeting held on 28.5.2008 (for the year 2005) and 29.9.2008 (for the years 2006 and 2007). On their selection, the notifications of their appointment were issued on 21.7.2008 and 11.11.2008. The 1st respondent after taking into consideration of their date of appointment had given weightage of four years to each of the applicants.;

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