After a gap of eight years, a cadre review exercise has been finally initiated for restructuring the income tax department “to enable and equip the department to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow”. A cadre review committee has been formed and is expected to submit its report by the middle of March 2009.
The committee will look at the recruitment, cadre management, deputation and various manpower reserves for Indian Revenue Service (IRS). Besides, it will also submit its recommendations on the new and emerging areas for the income tax department. The Indian Revenue Service (income tax) held its last cadre review in 2001.
Normally, the cadre structure of each Group-A Central service should be reviewed once in every five years.
The secretariat of the cadre review committee shall be the Directorate of Human Resources Development (HRD), Central Board of Direct taxes (CBDT), New Delhi. It will provide all necessary coordination and secretarial assistance to the committee for its functioning. The CBDT, Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance, is the cadre controlling authority for IRS (Income Tax) officers.
A communication sent by the income tax department to its employees on January 22 says, “To make the process of consultations wide and stakeholder inclusive, it has been decided that suggestions be invited from all concerned stakeholders in the department, including individual employees. The suggestions will cover role and strategic mission of the income tax department in the changing scenario, organisation structure and work processes of the department, organisation and functioning of assessment, post-assessment and collection set-up, organisation and functioning of investigation, intelligence and enforcement set-up, functioning of tax payer services and responsiveness of taxpayer administration in the income tax department”.
“Certain aspects relating to transfers and placements of IRS officers were changed in May 2008. But the cadre review committee will examine the entire gamut of issues concerning the income tax department,” a senior IRS officer told Hindustan Times.
Cabinet Secretary KM Chandrasekhar recently wrote to different secretaries to give reasons behind the delay, especially in carrying out cadre review of the Group A Services and asked for possible dates within which it could be completed.
Chandrasekhar in his letter has said, “I have seen the status of Cadre Review of the Group ‘A’ Services as prepared by the DOPT. It appears that in the case of a large number of Group ‘A’ Services, including the Services of which your Ministry is the Cadre Controlling Authority, such cadre review has not been held in time. You would appreciate that the tool of cadre reviews made use of to ensure timely career growth and progression of the officers of all services. Therefore, it is essential that the reviews are made in time so that frustration and lack of motivation leading to litigation etc. could be reduced”.
The concept of cadre review owes its origin to the recommendations made by the First Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) in its report on “personnel administration” released in 1969. The ARC recommended “for all service, advance projection should be made of the requirements of personnel for five years at a time” and these should be followed by mid-term appraisals where circumstances warrant it.