Parliamentary panel passes Federal Civil Service Bill


State Affairs and Good Governance Committee of the House of Representatives has passed the Federal Civil Service Bill.

The bill was passed by the panel despite the note of dissent from some ruling party lawmakers. The bill has proposed new retirement age for government employees. As per the bill, the employees can work till 60 years of age. However, those who turn 59 by 2022, can take voluntary retirement.

Similarly, the bill proposes to change the existing provision of 55 per cent seats for open competition and 45 per cent seats for reservation quota in the civil service examinations by making it 51 per cent and 49 per cent respectively.

The bill has also proposed reservation for the Khas-Arya, Muslims and Tharus. The bill also has the provision for province chief secretary’ appointment by the federal civil service commission.

However, the province secretary and administrative officer of the local levels will be appointed by the province civil service commission.

The committee has rejected the government proposal to appoint province chief secretary, province secretary and executives of the local levels by the federal civil service commission.

Committee Chair Sashi Shrestha had put the bill for a decision after committee members put their views on the report prepared by the committee’s secretariat.

Pampha Bhusal, Yasoda Subedi, Janardan Sharma and Maheshwor Jung Gahatraj among other lawmakers seconded the entire report whereas some other members expressed their differences with some points and provisions of the report.

The bill also proposes performance agreement of employees and makes a provision for deducting salary equivalent to 10 days if the employees delay work and give trouble to service seekers.

Similarly, the bill proposes to stop contract-based appointment of employees except for subject experts.

Speaking at the meeting, Minister of Federal Affairs and General Administration Hridayesh Tripathi argued that the committee should listen to the government’s opinion on topics related to the appointment of province chief secretary, secretary and administrative officers of the local levels.

He said the ministry did not know about the report said to have been agreed upon. “The government respects parliamentary supremacy, but if the bill is moved ahead without agreement, it will merely be confined to intellectual pleasure,” the minister said.

The committee members said the government should accept the panel’s decision as the bill is the Parliament’s property.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 30, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.