CONFEDERATION OF CENTRAL GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYEES AND WORKERS
e mail: email@example.com
A/2/95 Rajouri Garden
New Delhi. 110 027
Phone: 011 2510 5324
Fax 011 2510 5324
Mobile: 98110 48303
Conf/ D-11/..29 /2009 Dated: 15th March, 2009
The All India Audit and Accounts Association is one of the founding organizations of the Confederation of CGES and workers and remained its affiliate right from its inception. It has been in the vanguard of the movement of the Central Govt. employees and has a glorious history of struggles and sacrifices. Quite a number of its leaders and activists had faced punitive and vindictive actions at the hands of Audit bureaucracy in building up the movement. Through their tireless efforts, facing the tribulation with determination, the employees of IA&AD built a militant movement and led the central Govt. employees in the glorious strike actions in 1968 and 1974.
Recently the Kerala Unit of the All India Audit and Accounts Association had been on a relentless struggle against the decision of the Accountant General, Kerala to outsource some of the regular functions. To suppress the movement that gained momentum and received the support of the mass of the employees, the Accountant General resorted to vindictive actions against the union functionaries and prohibited all trade union actions within the premises. The extent of the bestial attitude of the AG Kerala and the magnitude of the problem could be seen from the enclosed resolution of the All India Audit and Accounts Association, detailing the manner and methodology adopted to ensure that no collective opposition to the policy of outsourcing ever take shape. The punitive action and the vindictiveness have reached its pinnacle in the dismissal of Com. KA Manuel, General Secretary, Audit Association, Category II, Kerala. Despite repeated plea by the All India Association, the Comptroller & Auditor General has refused to intervene in the matter and defuse the situation. Rather it appears that the Accountant General, Kerala has the tacit support of the C& AG. As could be seen from the circular letter of the Secretary General of the All India Audit and Accounts Association, the victimization does not appear to be an isolated affair at the Kerala Unit. No different is the attitude of the Audit bureaucracy elsewhere i.e. Rajkot, West Bengal, Gwalior and Mumbai.
We should consider it as a challenge to the very functioning of the unions in the
Central services and thus emanates the necessity of organizing solidarity and support actions immediately. We, therefore, call upon all affiliates and COCs to organize protest demonstrations in front of all offices on 25th March 2009 and send the following savingram to Shri Pranab Kumar Mukherjee, Hon'ble Finance Minister, North Block, New Delhi - 110 001.
SEEK YOUR INTERVENTION TO DIRECT THE CONCERNED TO VACATE ALL VINDICTIVE AND PUNITIVE ACTION AGAINST THE UNION FUNCTIONARIES AND ACTIVISTS IN THE OFFICES OF THE ACCOUNTANT GENERAL, THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, KERALA, RAJKOT, GWALIOR, MUMBAI AND WEST BENGAL AND SET ASIDE THE DISMISSAL OF SHRI KA MANUEL, GENERAL SECREGARY AUDIT ASSOCIATION, CAT.II KERALA.
Name of the President;
Name of the organisation.
Copy of the Savingram may please be sent to the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, New Delhi as also to the Confederation CHQ.
We have also been informed by the Secretary General, All India Audit and Accounts Association that he has decided to sit in indefinite fast from 30th of this month in front of the office of the Comptroller and Auditor General at New Delhi. Further course of action would be decided in the National Executive Committee, which is scheduled to meet in the first week of April, 2009. Notice for the said meeting is being issued separately.
This meeting of the Extended National Executive Committee of the All India Audit & Accounts Association (AIAAA) held in Thiruvananthapuram on 24 – 25 February 2009 has taken a serious note of the fact that on the one hand the issues raised by AIAAA have not been negotiated and settled for a long period since 1995. Formal meeting which used to be taking place periodically between the authorities and AIAAA either at departmental council or outside it bilaterally were not given under the pretext that AIAAA was not recognised.. Even later on when it had been recognised the meetings have been kept at informal level and no minutes have been received
Though the Comptroller & Auditor General of India in one informal meeting which took place soon after his assuming office in 2008 indicated that he would follow an open door policy permitting representatives to meet him any time, he has not kept his assurance and not a single formal meeting has been held despite of request for meeting several times. The result is a large accumulation of problems..
The IA&AD administration has commenced a policy of curbing legitimate Trade Union activities of the employees association. Even peaceful dharna is treated as violation of Rule 7 and Rule 3 of Conduct Rules only because as per instruction received from Home ministry, any meeting without permission would be violative of Rule 7. It is the considered opinion of the IA&AD administration that the fundamental right of freedom of expression manifested through demonstrations, dharna etc. have been surrendered by the employees by accepting the employment and adherence to conduct rules is a part of their contractual obligations.
In offices like Kerala, Rajkot, Gwalior, Kolkata etc., leaders and activists of organisation have been proceeded against and penalised very severely. In AG, Kerala 7% of staff numbering 100 have been served charge sheet under Rule 14 & 16 of CCS (CCA) Rules. In most of the cases the leaders of association have been given multiple charge sheets. Number of charge sheets issued would be around 10% of total strength. The CAG of India in his address to the staff at Thrissur branch of AG, Kerala and again in the meeting of staff representatives of the Kolkata based units of this association has indicated that he will not permit any demonstration, dharna etc. even during lunch hour in the compound of his offices and he would like to penalise such persons with major penalties including ouster from service invoking Rule 5 of CCS (Conduct) Rules. He has declined to discuss cases of victimisations for legitimate Trade Union action treating them as individual cases of indiscipline to be dealt with as such under the provisions of CCS (CCA) Rules.
This meeting has therefore concluded that IA&AD administration on the one hand are evading settlement of pending issues and have not agreed to have negotiations. On the other hand they want to impose a total ban on all legitimate trade union protest programmes by the staff association with a threat of disciplinary actions resulting in major penalties including removal from service etc. Therefore, the meeting of the view that the audit/accounts employees have to launch counter offensive and assert their fundamental right of freedom of expression through peaceful means of dharnas, demonstrations etc. including go slow and strike action with a view to ensure that the fundamental right of association are duly respected and authorities sit across the table to negotiate with the representatives of employees to settle the long pending demands.
This meeting with all the emphasis demands that all the disciplinary proceedings for trade union programmes of dharna, demonstration etc. wherever launched by the authorities should be vacated because these charge sheets are violative of fundamental right of freedom of expression and hence ultra vires of constitution. There is no question of treating these cases as individual indiscipline as they have been invoked against leaders and activists of employee's organisations and being un-constitutional in the nature of everything the fundamental right of freedom of expression must be vacated. So far Kerala office is concerned the massive dose of such unconstitutional charge sheets and proceedings have totally vitiated the employer-employee relation in the office. Therefore, it is demanded that the perpetrator of such action ie. Accountant General, Kerala should be shifted from that office which he had been working for more than 4 years in public interest so that the harmony in the employer-employee relation which is a pre-requisite of the efficient functioning of office is restored. The meeting has authorised the Secretariat to device concrete methods where by the message of this resolution is conveyed to the CAG and the authorities in IA&AD.
The meeting has directed the Secretarial t for a sustained programmatic approach till the objectives set are fully realized
Situation in AG Kerala leading upto dismissal of Com KA Manuel
In June 2006, the Accountant General (A&E) insisted that the Staff Side (we are the majority) approve the minutes finalised by him in the first meeting of the office council (the lowest layer under the JCM scheme for CG employees), where in issues not discussed/stated were incorporated. The refusal of staff side for approving the minutes unilaterally drafted was the first open confrontation.
Soon after that the Accountant General decided to outsource the work of data entry related to one rank-one pension scheme of state employees, without consulting the recognised Associations. (It is a work on which the employees are entitled to get honorarium). The outsourcing of such a work would ultimately put the onus of any error at the data entry level on the AG's office staff who will be authorising the payment with all responsibility.
Agitations against this were started. The Accountant General during this period issued two letters to the membership (one as an article in the internal magazine) ridiculing the Associations, its past struggles and called the leaders who led struggle in the past as self seekers. He questioned the work culture and stated that majority of the employees do not work.
This led to acrimonious exchanges and the relation stooped to new low, there were no meetings with the staff side and Accountant General.
Immediately thereafter in November 2006, one of the leading activist of the Association was suspended for raising doubts in the meeting convened by the Accountant General. A long drawn agitation started with mass dharna.
The dharna was called off at the intervention of Com VS Achuthanandan, Chief Minister on the assurance given by the AG to CM that once the agitation was called off he would withdraw the suspension. Though the suspension was withdrawn by the AG after a reminder from CM, he started initiating disciplinary proceedings under Rules against scores of leaders and activists.
But the victimisations continued. In November 2007, indefinite fast against the victimisations started which lasted 38 days.
The table below gives picture of the extent of victimisation in Kerala.
( A &E )
RULE – 14
RULE – 16
Denial of promotions
Reversion from Deputation
Break in Service
Reversion (to the min. of LDC (with no increment for 5 years) from the scale of 4500-7000) ----- -- 1 (A&E)
Reversion from Sr.Accountant to Accountant ------------------------------ 1
DIES –NON --- AG (A&E)
Upto 40 Days ---- 300 (Approx)
Further chargesheets have been issued under Rule 16 of CCS (CCA) Rules to 23 leaders and activists of the Association since 7th July 2008 in AG (A&E) where as for the same charges Four comrades have been chargesheeted in the O/o PAG (Audit) under Rule 14- major penalty.
The employees and officers (ie SO/AAO) meeting Accountant General on personal matters are asked which organisation they belong to and why don't they resign from the Association
Com Manuel, General Secretary, Audit Association Category II (i.e. Section officers/Assistant Audit Officers) has been served with three Rule 14 chargesheets of which enquiry in one case is over and he has been dismissed from service. The order was served on 5th March 2009. he has got 16 years of service left.
Situation in other Stations
President of Civil Audit Association, Rajkot, Gujarat was first posted to inspection party and in August 2008 was kept under suspension which extended beyond 3 months. The reason is nothing but his leading role in the organisation.
In West Bengal, former President of All India Association and former General Secretary of WB Units are proceeded against under Rule 14 of CCS (CCA) Rules, 1965 for presiding over a meeting of daily wage workers and leading agitation demanding minimum remuneration to them. Com Gautam Pramanick was chargesheeted a fortnight before his superannuation.
In Mumbai dies-non is invoked for participating in lunch hour demonstration.
In Gwalior, many comrades are victimised for participating in an agitation in 1997 against the then Accountant General. Former Addl SG of Association Com OP Tiwari was compulsorily retired on the eve of his superannuation and his pension was reduced by 20%.
As the enclosed resolution states CAG himself has stated in Thrisur as well as at Kolkata that he does not believe in minor penalties and won't hesitate to use Rule 5 (of CCS (TS) Rules)
All India Audit & Accounts Association has called upon every unit to hold protest demonstrations and observe black week from 16-20 March 2009.
We have given a letter to CAG seeking intervention and positive response in a fortnight's time.
We have given circular to units saying that Secretary General would commence indefinite fast from 23rd March before CAG's office and to be followed by unit leaders from 25th March in each station with massive demonstration.