In a significant decision, the Uttarakhand government has decided to introduce compulsory retirement for all officials above the age of 50 if they fail an annual screening test meant to check their performance. According to the government order issued on Thursday, a screening committee would meet every year to ascertain the performance of employees above 50. The ones who fail to meet the minimum criteria will be offered the voluntary retirement scheme (VRS). The government has also directed all departments to conduct the screening committee meetings for the last financial year (2016-17) with immediate effect.
The order issued by chief secretary S Ramaswamy states that “for good administration, it is important to chop off the dead wood, but the decision to part ways with the officer should be taken only after reviewing his/her entire service record.”
Sources said that through this decision, the government aims to send out a stern warning to nonperformers. In February 2002 and June 2003, the department of personnel had issued a similar order, but it was not implemented reportedly due to “bureaucratic hurdles and political unwillingness”.
In the order issued by the chief secretary this week, every department has been instructed to form a screening committee and hold its annual meeting in November. The details of these meetings have to be made available to the department of personnel by March 31.