Central Government Employees MACP rules: Can a department/establishment deny MACP (Minimum Assured Career Progression) to a substituted Central Government Employee after not screening him for years?
Central Government Employees MACP Rules: Can a department/establishment deny MACP (Minimum Assured Career Progression) to a Central Government Employee after not screening him for years? In case MACP is allowed, will the unscreened years count? Answers to similar questions were provided in a recent order of CAT-Principal Bench. As per the order in Babu Lal vs The General Manager, Northern Railway (dated 13.09.2019), the unscreened service should be counted for grant of MACP benefits when screening is not held for no fault of the government servant.
Babu Lal was employed as Fitter/Khalasi in Construction Organisation of Northern Railways. He was disengaged for some time but appointed again as unscreened substitute Safaiwala in 1989 through official order. He was also sent for medical examination and found fit. The northern railway did not screen Babu Lal for 14 years. Thereafter, he requested for MACP under 6th Pay Commission. The Northern Railways sent Babu Lal for screening after which he was found suitable and regularized w.e.f. 22.2.2013. However, only 50 per cent of his service since 1989 till regularisation was considered for giving him Assured Career Progression (ACP) and MACP. Hundred per cent of his service from 22.2.2013 onwards was to be considered for MACP as per Railways’order.
Babu Lal’s Counsel had contended before the tribunal that “he is entitled for counting of 100% of his service from the date of his appointment as Substitute w.e.f. 31.8.1989 and for the fault of the respondents in not holding screening test, he shall not be subjected to disadvantage in granting him ACP and MACP benefits.”
The Counsel also cited Railway Board Circular (R.B.E. No. 36/2010), according to which Babu Lal was “entitled for counting the entire temporary service of Substitute for purposes of MACP.” The railway circular said, “… the entire temporary status service of substitutes followed by regularization without break may be taken into account towards the minimum service of 10, 20 and 30 years for the purpose of grant of benefit under the MACP Scheme.” According to the Railway circular, ” there is no distinction between a screened Substitute and unscreened Substitute and, therefore, the entire service of temporary Substitute shall be counted for the purposes of granting MACP benefits.”
What CAT said
The tribunal observed that Babu Lal had never refused to appear in the screening test. The railways had itself not conducted the screening test for 14 years. “The respondents are directed to count 100% service of the applicant from 31.08.1989 and grant him ACP/MACP benefits with all consequential benefits within three months from the receipt of the copy of this order,” the tribunal said.
What is MACP Scheme?
MACPS allows three financial upgradations in the career of a Central Government Employee. Counting for upgradation under MACPS starts from the direct entry grade on completion of 10,20, 30 years services respectively.