Eight Punjab Civil Services (PCS) officers, who have been working in various capacities in the state for the past seven to 14 years have been left reeling from the shock after their names were found missing from the recently updated seniority list.
The list does not mention the direct appointees recruited between November 1999 and February 2006 under the state government's policy of 'honour and gratitude to war heroes'. The document mentioned that chief minister Parkash Singh Badal had decided that "…seniority of these officers would be fixed at a later stage".
Sources said the personnel department had kept all the officers recruited under the war heroes policy in Register B, which comprises all direct recruits to the PCS.
However, some of the names were shifted to other registers by an order of the department, but the officers were not informed.The affected officers, refusing to be quoted, said, "The decision is contrary to the policy of honour and gratitude to war heroes, which clearly says that we should be placed in Register B."
Pointing out that junior-level officers recruited in 2003 would supersede them, the officers said, "Some of the officers recruited in the 2003 PCS were appearing in the examination for the first time, while some of the officers in the war heroes category had been recruited before 2003. Now we have been pushed behind them."
However, the officers, hopeful for speedy resolution of the matter, have said that they would approach the state government.
State personnel department secretary Sarabjit Singh said he would look into the matter and assured an early solution.
The war heroes' policy had been implemented after the Kargil war of 1999, to give recognition to the relatives of soldiers and officers killed in war or in insurgency.Ten officers had been recruited under the policy; one had not joined and another had died.
The state government had pulled out the names of officers in the war heroes category from the list after finalising the seniority of 63 officers recruited after the 2003 examination, which was a re-conduct of the 1998 examination as the batch of 1998 was dismissed after the then chairman of Punjab Public Service Commission, Ravi Sidhu, was arrested in the cash-for-job scam.
The affected officers are Parneet Shergill, additional chief administrator, Patiala Development Authority; Navjot Pal Singh Randhawa, director tourism; Ranjit Kaur, Garhshankar SDM; Poonamdeep Kaur, Nabha SDM; Amandeep Kaur on deputation in UT Chandigarh as SDM south; Vimi Sohal, general manager, Punjab Bhawan, Delhi; Daljit Kaur, Kapurthala DTO; and Navjot Kaur, estate officer, Greater Mohali Area Development Authority.