Grameen Dak Sevaks – KC Committee report: Lok Sabha QA

Grameen Dak Sevaks: Detailed statement on Employment, 7th CPC preview, KC Committee report and grievances – Lok Sabha QA

GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS
DEPARTMENT OF POSTS

LOK SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO. 240
TO BE ANSWERED ON 4TH AUGUST, 2021

GRAMEEN DAK SEVAKS

*240. SHRI C.N. ANNADURAI: SHRI DHANUSH M. KUMAR:

Will the Minister of COMMUNICATIONS be pleased to state:

(a) the number of Grameen Dak Sevaks (GDS) presently employed in the country, State/UT- wise including Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra;

(b) whether there is shortage of GDS across the country and if so, the details thereof including the number of vacant posts of GDS, State/UT-wise including Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra;

(c) whether the services rendered by GDS are beneficial to rural populace and if so, the details thereof;

(d) whether pay/remuneration of GDS has not been increased as per the recommendations of Seventh Pay Commission, if so, the details thereof and the reasons therefor;

(e) whether the Government had constituted any committee to look into the salary structure, other service matters and problems of GDS, if so, the details and the major recommendations thereof; and

(f) whether the Government has implemented the recommendations of the aforesaid committee, if so, the details thereof and if not, the reasons therefor?

ANSWER

MINISTER OF RAILWAYS, COMMUNICATIONS & ELECTRONICS AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (SHRI ASHWINI VAISHNAW)

(a) to (f) A statement is laid on the Table of the House.

STATEMENT TO BE LAID ON THE TABLE OF THE LOK SABHA IN RESPECT OF PARTS (a) TO (f) OF LOK SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO. 240 FOR ANSWER ON 4TH AUGUST, 2021 REGARDING “GRAMEEN DAK SEVAKS”

(a) The number of Gramin Dak Sevaks (GDS) presently employed in the country including Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra are 2,37,441. The State/UT-wise details are at Annexure-I.

(b) Vacancies of GDS occur on continuous basis across the country due to various reasons viz. discharge of GDS on attaining 65 years of age, death, voluntary discharge, attrition, absorption into Department on promotion etc. The number of vacant posts of GDS, State/UT- wise including Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra is at Annexure-II. Filling up of GDS vacancies is a continuous process, which is undertaken through laid down GDS online engagement process.

(c) Yes Sir. Gramin Dak Sevaks render a number of mail and financial services which meet the requirement of rural populace and are beneficial to them. These inter-alia include running of Branch Post Offices in rural areas and providing services like sale of stamps, booking and delivery of mail articles including Speed Post, booking and delivery of e-money orders, all transactions related to various Post Office Savings Schemes including Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana and of Rural Postal Life Insurance Schemes & Postal Life Insurance Schemes, and services of India Post Payments Bank which include door step banking, AEPS based withdrawals from bank accounts, submission of Digital Life Certificate etc.

(d) No Sir. Gramin Dak Sevaks do not come under the purview of Pay Commission. The Gramin Dak Sevaks are holders of civil posts, but are outside the regular civil service. Seventh Pay Commission recommendations are, therefore not applicable to GDS. They work for a minimum of four hours and a maximum of five hours a day. This work is part time in nature and for this work they are paid Time Related Continuity Allowance (TRCA).

(e) Yes Sir. A Kamlesh Chandra Committee was set up vide resolution No. 17-13/2013-GDS dated 19th November, 2015 by the Government of India for examining the conditions of service, emoluments and other facilities available to the Gramin Dak Sevaks. The Terms of Reference of the Committee included the following: –

(i) To examine the system of Branch Post Offices, employment conditions and the existing structure of wage and emoluments paid to the Gramin Dak Sevaks and recommend necessary changes;

(ii) To review the existing Service Discharge Benefit Scheme/other social security benefits for the GDS employees and suggest necessary changes;

(iii) To review the existing facilities/welfare measures provided to the Gramin Dak Sevaks and suggest necessary changes;

(iv) To examine and suggest any changes in the method of recruitment, minimum qualification for appointment as Gramin Dak Sevaks and their conduct and disciplinary rules, particularly keeping in view the proposed induction of technology in the Rural Post Offices.

The Committee submitted its report on 24.11.2016. Details of Major recommendation are at Annexure-III.

(f) The major recommendations of the Committee have been accepted and implemented by the Department. Some of the recommendations have not been accepted due to reasons that included extra financial burden on the Government and certain recommendations being at variance from the policy guidelines of the Government. Details are at Annexure-IV.

Annexure-I

Annexure referred to in reply to Part (a) of Lok Sabha Starred Question No.240 for 04.08.2021 regarding Grameen Dak Sevaks.

The State-wise information on number of GDS presently employed including Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra is as under: –

Name of State Number of GDS presently employed
Andhra Pradesh 16001
Arunachal Pradesh 413
Assam 6878
Bihar 14221
Chhattisgarh 6203
Goa 318
Gujarat 12861
Haryana 3449
Himachal Pradesh 5702
Jharkhand 5961
Karnataka 13141
Kerala 9303
Madhya Pradesh 11808
Maharashtra 17591
Meghalaya 877
Manipur 1787
Mizoram 962
Nagaland 783
Odisha 15277
Punjab 5557
Rajasthan 13086
Sikkim 408
Tamilnadu 18959
Telangana 8174
Tripura 1083
Uttar Pradesh 22689
Uttarakhand 5272
West Bengal 15973
Total 2,34,737

 

The Union Territory-wise information on number of GDS presently employed is as under:

Name of the Union Territory Number of GDS presently employed
Andaman  and Nicobar Islands 140
Chandigarh 32
Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu 76
NCT of Delhi 146
Jammu & Kashmir 2044
Ladakh 127
Lakshadweep 09
Pondicherry 130
Total 2704
Grand Total (234737+ 2704)= 2,37,441

 

Annexure-II

Annexure referred to in reply to Part (b) of Lok Sabha Starred Question No.240 for 04.08.2021 regarding Grameen Dak Sevaks.

The State-wise information on number of vacant posts of GDS including Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra is as under: –

Name of State Vacant post of GDS
Andhra Pradesh 3204
Arunachal Pradesh 164
Assam 2089
Bihar 1940
Chhattisgarh 1959
Goa 74
Gujarat 3868
Haryana 1012
Himachal Pradesh 962
Jharkhand 2582
Karnataka 3572
Kerala 2899
Madhya Pradesh 4761
Maharashtra 4819
Meghalaya 284
Manipur 44
Mizoram 129
Nagaland 91
Odisha 3253
Punjab 1173
Rajasthan 3246
Sikkim 99
Tamilnadu 4691
Telangana 3147
Tripura 603
Uttar Pradesh 14519
Uttarakhand 1377
West Bengal 5647
Total 72,208

 

The Union Territory-wise information on number of vacant posts of GDS is as under: –

Name of the Union Territory Vacant post of GDS
Andaman and Nicobar Islands 74
Chandigarh 19
Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu 23
NCT of Delhi 352
Jammu & Kashmir 716
Ladakh 19
Lakshadweep 0
Pondicherry 41
Total 1244
Grand Total (72,208 +1244) 73,452

 

Annexure-III

Annexure referred to in reply to Part (e) of Lok Sabha Starred Question No. 240 for 04.08.2021 regarding Grameen Dak Sevaks.

Extract of Major recommendations of Kamlesh Chandra Committee Report.

1. The old system of payment of Time Related Continuity Allowance )TRCA (is recommended to be dispensed with and replaced with a new wage payment system . Under the new wage payment system, 11 TRCA slabs are recommended to be subsumed into 3 Wage Scales with two Levels each for BPMs and for other than BPMs .One wage scale is recommended to be common for both the categories of GDSs.

Recommended New Wage Scale

a. 10,000 -24,470 )Other than BPM Level-I(

b. 12,000- 29,380 )Other than BPM Level 2 & BPM Level 1(

c. 14,500 -35,480 )BPM Level 2 (

2. The minimum working hours of GDS Post Offices and GDSs are recommended to be increased to 4 hours from 3 hours.

3. The new working hours for GDS Post Offices are recommended to be 4 hours and 5 hours only.

4. The Level 1 GDS Post Offices/GDSs are recommended to be 4 hours as working hours and Level –2 are recommended 5 hours as working hours.

5. The Point System for assessment of workload of BPMs is recommended to be abolished.

6. The new wage payment system is recommended to be linked to revenue generation of GDS Post Offices .Under the new system it is proposed that there will be no increase in wages of BPMs from Level -1 to Level -2 on the basis of workload but the same are recommended to be increased based on achievement of prescribed revenue norms which to be is fixed at 100%for normal areas and 50%for special areas which presently have 15% anticipated income norms.

7. The GDS Post Offices not achieving the prescribed revenue norm within the given working hours are recommended to be opened for minimum of additional 30 minutes beyond the prescribed working hours.

8. The GDS BPMs are recommended to be paid Revenue Linked Allowance @10 %beyond level-2 wage scale in case they are successful in achieving revenue beyond prescribed norms.

9. The GDS Post Offices are recommended to be categorized into A, B, C and D categories based on the revenue generation norms .The GDS Post Office in A category should be

able to achieve 100 %revenue .The Committee has recommended a set of actions for each category of GDS Post Offices.

10. The six approved categories of GDSs are recommended to be subsumed into two categories only .One category is recommended to be of Branch Post Master and all other 5 categories of GDSs are recommended to be subsumed into one Multi-Tasking Category.

11. The job profile of Multi-Tasking GDS is recommended to be expanded to include work such as Business Development and Marketing etc .Their jobs should no more be confined to their old designations .The Assistant BPM should assist BPMs for increasing revenue generation.

12. The GDSs working in the GDS Post Offices are recommended to be known as Assistant Branch Post Masters)ABPMs (and those working in the Departmental Post Offices are recommended to be known as Dak Sevaks)DS) .

13. The minimum wage is recommended to be increased to Rs.10000-/per month and maximum pay to Rs.35480-/per month.

14. The rate of annual increase is recommended as 3.%

15. A Composite Allowance comprising of support for hiring accommodation for GDS Post Offices as well as mandatory residence, office maintenance, mobile and electricity usage charges etc .has been recommended to be introduced for the first time.

16. Children Education Allowance @Rs.6000 -/per child per annum is recommended to be introduced for GDSs.

17. Risk & Hardship Allowance @Rs.500 -/per month for GDS working in the special areas has also been recommended.

18. A Financial up-gradation has been recommended to be introduced at 12 years, 24 years and 36 years of services in form of two advance additional annual increases.

19. The Ceiling of ex-gratia gratuity has been recommended to be increased from Rs. 60,000 to Rs.5,00,000.-/

20. The GDS Contribution for Service Discharge Benefit Scheme )SDBS (is recommended to be enhanced to between a range of a minimum of 3% to a maximum of 10 %of the basic wage per month, whereas the Department should contribute a fixed contribution of 3 %of the basic wage of the GDSs.

21. The coverage of GDS Group Insurance Scheme has been recommended to be enhanced from Rs.50000 -/to Rs.5,00,000.-/

22. The contribution of Department in Circle Welfare Fund )CWF (has been recommended to be increased from Rs.100-/per annum to Rs.300-/per annum.

23. The scope of CWF is recommended to be extended to cover immediate family members such as spouse; daughters, sons and dependent daughters in law in the scheme.

24. The Committee also recommended 10 %hike in the prescribed limits of financial grants and assistances in the Circle Welfare Funds.

25. The Committee has recommended addition of Rs. 10,000-/for purchase of Tablet/Mobile from the Circle Welfare under the Head “Financial Assistance of Fund by way of loans with lower rate of interest )5(%”.

26. Provision of 26 weeks of Maternity Leave for women GDS has been recommended.

27. The wages for the entire period of Maternity Leave is recommended to be paid from salary head from where wages of GDSs are paid.

28. The Committee has also recommended one week of Paternity leave.

29. The Committee has recommended 5 days of emergency leave per annum.

30. Leave accumulation and encashment facility up to 180 days has been recommended to be introduced.

31. Online system of engagement has been recommended.

32. The maximum age limit of 50 years for Direct Recruitment of GDSs has been recommended to be abolished.

33. Minimum one year of GDS service is recommended for Direct Recruitment into Departmental cadre such as MTS/Postman/Mail Guard.

34. Alternate livelihood condition for engagement of GDSs has been recommended to be relaxed.

35. Voluntary Discharge scheme has been recommended.

36. The Discharge age has been recommended to be retained at 65 years.

37. The Limited Transfer Facility has been recommended to be relaxed from 1 time to 3 times for male GDSs .There should be no restriction on number of chances for transfer of women GDSs .The powers for transfer has been recommended to be delegated to the concerned Divisional head.

38. The ex-gratia payment during put off period is recommended to be revised to 35 %from 25 %of the wage and DA drawn immediately before put off.

39. The Committee has recommended preferring transfer before put off duty.

40. The Compassionate Engagement of GDSs has been recommended to be relaxed to give benefits to eligible dependents in all cases death of GDS while in service.

Annexure-IV

Annexure referred to in reply to Part (f) of Lok Sabha Starred Question No. 240 for 04.08.2021 regarding Grameen Dak Sevaks.

Details of Recommendations implemented, Not Implemented and Under Examination is as under: –

Major recommendation in brief. Implemented/Not implemented Reason(s)      of non- implementation
The old system of payment of Time Related Continuity Allowance (TRCA)is recommended to be dispensed with and replaced with a new wage payment system. Under the new wage payment system, 11 TRCA slabs are recommended to be subsumed into 3 Wage Scales with two Levels each for BPMs and for other than BPMs. One wage scale is recommended to be common for both the categories of GDSs.

Recommended New Wage Scale

10,000 -24,470 (Other than BPM Level 1)

12,000 -29,380 (Other than BPM Level 2 & BPM Level 1)

14,500 -35,480 (BPM Level 2)

 

Implemented.

The minimum working hours of GDS Post Offices and GDSs are recommended to be increased to 4 hours from 3 hours. Implemented.
The new working hours for GDS Post Offices are recommended to be 4 hours and 5 hours only. Implemented.
The Level 1 GDS Post Offices/GDSs are recommended to be 4 hours as working hours and Level –2 are recommended 5 hours as working hours. Implemented.
The  Point  System  for  assessment  of  workload  of  BPMs  is recommended to be abolished. Not implemented. Under examination.
The new wage payment system is recommended to be linked to revenue generation of GDS Post Offices. Under the new system, there should be no increase in wages of BPMs from Level -1 to Level -2 on the basis of workload but the same are recommended to be increased based on achievement of prescribed revenue norms which to be is fixed at 100% for normal areas and 50%for special areas which presently have 15% anticipated income norms. Not implemented. Under examination.
The GDS Post Offices not achieving the prescribed revenue norm within the given working hours are recommended to be opened for minimum of additional 30 minutes beyond the prescribed working hours. Not implemented. Under examination.
The GDS  BPMs  are  recommended  to  be  paid  Revenue  Linked Allowance  @10%  beyond  level-2  wage  scale  in  case  they  are successful in achieving revenue beyond prescribed norms. Not implemented. Under examination.
The GDS Post Offices are recommended to be categorized into A, B, C and D categories based on the revenue generation norms. The GDS Post Office in A category should be able to achieve 100% revenue. The Committee has recommended a set of actions for each category of GDS Post Offices. Not implemented. Under examination.
The six approved categories of GDSs are recommended to be subsumed into two categories only. One category is recommended to be of Branch Post Master and all other 5 categories of GDSs are recommended to be subsumed into one Multi-Tasking Category. Implemented.
The job profile of Multi-Tasking GDS is recommended to be expanded to include work such as Business Development and Marketing etc. Their jobs should no more be confined to their old designations. The Assistant BPM should assist BPMs for increasing revenue generation. Implemented.
The GDSs working in the GDS Post Offices are recommended to be known as Assistant Branch Post Masters(ABPMs)and those working in the Departmental Post Offices are recommended to be known as Dak Sevaks (DS). Implemented.
The minimum wage is recommended to be increased to Rs.10000/- per month and maximum pay to Rs.35480/-per month. Implemented.
The rate of annual increase is recommended as 3%. Implemented.
A Composite Allowance comprising of support for hiring accommodation for GDS Post Offices as well as mandatory residence, office maintenance, mobile and electricity usage charges etc. has been recommended to be introduced for the first time. Implemented.
Children Education Allowance @Rs. 6000/-per child per annum is recommended to be introduced for GDSs. Implemented.
Risk  &  Hardship  Allowance  @Rs.500/-  per  month  for  GDS working in the special areas has also been recommended. Implemented.
A Financial up-gradation has been recommended to be introduced at 12 years, 24 years and 36 years of services in form of two advance additional annual increases. Not implemented. Under examination.
The  Ceiling  of  ex-gratia  gratuity  has  been  recommended  to  be increased from Rs.60,000 to Rs.5,00,000/-. Implemented. Ceiling   enhanced to 1.5 lakhs.
The GDS Contribution for Service Discharge Benefit Scheme (SDBS) is reccommended to be enhanced to between a range of a minimum of 3% to a maximum of 10% of the basic wage per month, whereas the Department should contribute a fixed contribution of 3% of the basic wage of the GDSs. Implemented. GDS  contribution enhanced      from Rs. 200 to Rs. 300

and matching contribution of the Government of Rs.300.

The   coverage   of   GDS   Group   Insurance   Scheme   has   been recommended to be enhanced from Rs.50000/- to Rs.5,00,000/-. Not implemented. Under examination.
The contribution of Department in Circle Welfare Fund (CWF)has been recommended to be increased from Rs.100/-per annum to Rs.300/- per annum. Not implemented. Under examination.
The scope of CWF is recommended to be extended to cover immediate family members such as spouse; daughters, sons and dependent daughters in law in the scheme. Not implemented. Under examination.
The Committee also recommended 10% hike in the prescribed limits of financial grants and assistances in the Circle Welfare Funds. Not implemented. Under examination.
The Committee has recommended addition of Rs. 10,000/-for purchase of Tablet/Mobile from the Circle Welfare under the Head “Financial Assistance of Fund by way of loans with lower rate of interest (5%)”. Not implemented. Under examination.
Provision of 26 weeks of Maternity Leave for women GDS has been recommended. Implemented. Provision   of   180 days  of maternity leave   to   Female GDS.
The wages for the entire period of Maternity Leave is recommended to be paid from salary head from where wages of GDSs are paid. Implemented.
The Committee has also recommended one week of Paternity leave. Not implemented. Rejected.
The Committee has recommended 5 days of emergency leave per annum. Implemented .
Leave accumulation and encashment facility up to 180 days has been recommended to be introduced. Not implemented. Rejected
Online system of engagement has been recommended. Implemented.
The  maximum age limit  of 50 years for Direct  Recruitment  of GDSs has been recommended to be abolished. Implemented.
Minimum one year of GDS service is recommended for Direct Recruitment into Departmental cadre such as MTS/Postman/Mail Guard. Implemented.
Alternate livelihood condition for engagement of GDSs has been recommended to be relaxed. Implemented.
Voluntary Discharge scheme has been recommended. Implemented.
The Discharge age has been recommended to be retained at 65 years. Implemented.
The Limited Transfer Facility has been recommended to be relaxed from 1 time to 3 times for male GDSs. There should be no restriction on number of chances for transfer of women GDSs. The powers for transfer has been recommended to be delegated to the concerned Divisional head. Implemented. 3 Chances           for Female  GDS  and

2     chances     for Male GDS.

The ex-gratia payment during put off period is recommended to be revised to 35% from 25% of the wage and DA drawn immediately before put off. Not implanted. Under examination.
The Committee has recommended preferring transfer before put off duty. Implemented.     A provision has been made for transfer on administrative/vigilance grounds.
The Compassionate Engagement of GDSs has been recommended to be relaxed to give benefits to eligible dependents in all cases death of GDS while in service. Implemented.

Source: Lok Sabha

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