The Kerala Panchayat Raj (Control over Officers) Rules, 1997.


1. Short title and commencement. —

(1) These rules may be called the Kerala Panchayat Raj (Control over Officers) Rules, 1997.

(2) They shall come into force at once.

 

2.Definitions. — (1) In these rules unless the context otherwise requires, —

(a) 'Act' means the Kerala Panchayat Raj Act, 1994 (13 of 1994);

(b)'appointing authority' means an Officer or authority authorised by the Government to appoint an employee to the Government Service or Panchayat Service.
(c)'Municipality' means a Municipality constituted under Section 4 of the Kerala Municipality Act, 1994 (20 of 1994));
(d)'officer' includes the Secretary appointed under sub-section (l)of Section 179, officers and employees appointed to Panchayat Service as per rules made under sub-section (4) of Section 180 or rules made under the Kerala Panchayat Raj Act, 1960 (32 of 1960), and any Government Officer or employee whose service has been lent to the Panchayat under sub section (2) of Section 176 or sub-section (1) of Section 181;

(e) 'section' means a section of the Act;

(f)The words and expressions used and not defined in these rules but defined in the Act shall have the meanings respectively assigned to them in the Act.

3. Lending of service of Government Officers and employees to the Panchayat. —

(1)
The Government may, by a special or general order, lend the service of any Government officer or employee including temporary, full time, part time or contingent officer or employee to the Panchayat under sub-section (2) of Section 176 or sub-section (1) of Section 181.
(2)
The Government officers and employees lent to Panchayat under sub-rule (1) shall be considered as employees of Government for all matters regarding service and their service and wages conditions shall be continued as if they were continued in the Government service and their salary, allowances and other financial benefits shall be given from the Panchayat fund or contribution for the same shall be given to the Government by the Panchayat:

* Published as S.R.O. No.534/97.

Provided that the Government may continue to give such salary, allowances and other financial benefits to them from the consolidated fund of the Government till the period as the Government may deem fit.

(3)
The Government officers and employees whose service has been lent to Panchayat shall be under the full control and supervision of the Panchayat and they shall exercise those powers and perform duties as may be determined by the Panchayat for matters coming within the jurisdiction of the Panchayat subject to the general restrictions as may be fixed by the Government.
(4)
Every Government officer or employee whose service has been lent to Panchayat while serving for the Panchayat shall also have the authority to exercise the powers entrusted by the Government and shall be liable to perform the duties.
(5)
The Government officers and employees whose service has been lent to Panchayat shall not be entitled to get deputation allowance.
(6)
The Panchayat shall have authority to appoint by transfer any Government officer and employee whose service has been lent to Panchayat from any office or institution of the Panchayat to office of the Panchayat or to any other office or institution under that Panchayat:

Provided that a Government officer or employee shall not be appointed by transfer from a department to another department:

Provided further that Panchayat shall be liable to comply with the general guidelines regarding the transfer of Government officers issued by the Government from time to time.

(7)
Government may for sufficient reasons take back any Government officer or employee whose service has been lent to a Panchayat for the service of Government or may be appointed by transfer from that Panchayat to another Panchayat or to a Municipality.
(8)
If a vacancy arises due to transfer, leave or any other reason in the post of Government Officer or employee whose service was lent to Panchayat and in the circumstances where the service of another Government Officer or employee is not immediately lent to fill such vacancy, subject to such general guidelines issued by the Government, the Panchayat may appoint another person temporarily in that vacancy, by informing the appointing authority in advance, for a period not exceeding six months or till a Government officer or employee is appointed to such vacancy which ever is earlier,—

(a) through employment exchange; or

(b)
if candidate is not available through employment exchange on contract basis as per the conditions specially provided by the Government:

Provided that in the case of such temporary appointment as school teachers, if necessary, the period of six months may be reckoned, as till the end of respective academic year.

4. Imposing of minor penalties on officers. — (1) Where an officer fails to perform his official duty or violates the discipline or refuses to carry out the lawful decision of the Panchayat or wilfully obstructs the implementation thereof or fails to obey the lawful orders of the President, or for the misbehaviour or misconduct of an officer, the Panchayat may take disciplinary proceedings against such officer and may impose on him any one of the following minor penalties, namely: —

(1)
censure,
(2)
fine,
(3)
temporary withholding of increment,
(4)
withholding of promotion,
(5)
recovery of amount from salary.

Notes: — (i) No fine shall be levied on an officer except in the post of last grade, part-time or full-time contingent. Huge amount shall not be levied as fine and trifle fine shall not be levied frequently;

(ii) the period of withholding of increment shall not be less than three months and not more than three years. There will not be any cumulative effect on withholding of increment and shall not have the effect of postponing future increments;

(iii) withholding of promotion shall be temporarily for a specific period and this period shall not be less than six months and not more than three years;

(iv)
if the period is not specified in the order of withholding of increment or promotion it will be deemed to be three months and six months respectively;
(v)
in the case where the order of withholding of increment cannot be given effect to the monetary value equivalent to the amount of increments ordered to be withheld will be recovered from the salary of the concerned officer;
(vi)
recovery of amount from salary as a penalty shall be made only when pecuniary loss is caused to the Panchayat by the Act of the officer;

(vii) withholding of promotion of the officer concerned shall not entail loss of seniority in the grade for the time being he is working;

(viii) an officer whose promotion is withheld, shall if and when promoted to a higher grade or to higher time-scale subsequently, on promotion take his place at the bottom of the higher grade or higher time-scale.

(2)
In the case where Panchayat initiates disciplinary action against an officer of the Panchayat referred to in Section 180 for an offence, the Secretary shall not, and in case where the Secretary initiates disciplinary action under clause (ix) of Section 182, the Panchayat shall not initiate disciplinary action against such person for the same offence.
(3)
Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule (1) the concerned appointing authority and disciplinary authority shall have the power to initiate disciplinary action against the Secretary or Government officer or employee whose service has been lent to Panchayat under sub-section
(2)
of Section 176 or under sub-section (1) of Section 181.
(4)
In the case where Panchayat initiates disciplinary action for an offence, against Secretary or Government officer or employee whose service has been lent to Panchayat, the concerned appointing authority or disciplinary authority and in the case where the appointing authority or disciplinary authority initiates disciplinary action under sub-rule (3) the Panchayat, shall not initiate disciplinary action, against such person for the same offence.
(5)
In the case where the Secretary under clause (xi) of Section 182 or by the appointing authority or disciplinary authority, as the case may be, under sub-rule (3), initiates disciplinary

action against an employee whose service has been lent to Panchayat, it shall be in accordance with the Kerala Civil Service (Classification, Control and Appeal) Rules, 1960.

(6) If the Panchayat so decides, the Panchayats may require the Secretary to initiate disciplinary action for any offence against an employee of the Panchayat and the concerned disciplinary authority to intimate disciplinary action against a Government officer or employee whose service has been lent to Panchayat.

5. Procedure to issue memo of charges. — (1) Where on the basis of available informations, the President or the Panchayat prima facie is satisfied that an officer has committed an offence referred to in sub-rule (1) of Rule 4 and disciplinary action has to be initiated against him, the Panchayat has to decide, whether disciplinary action has to be initiated against that person and if the Panchayat so decides a notice requiring to show-cause for not initiating such disciplinary action shall be issued to the concerned officer. In the case of Secretary, the notice shall be issued by the President and in the case of an officer other than the Secretary, by the Secretary, as per the orders of the President:

Provided that on urgent occasions, notice may be issued subject to ratification of the Panchayat.

(2) The grounds proposed for initiating disciplinary action against the concerned officer shall be clearly shown in the notice issued under sub-rule (1) and after the receipt of notice not less than seven days time shall be allowed to furnish reply.

Note: — Vague statements shall be avoided in the notice, for example, a general statement in the nature of "not complied with the direction of President or Panchayat" shall not be a ground intended to initiate disciplinary action, instead of it shall be specifically stated that what direction in which circumstances has not been complied with.

(3)
The President shall submit, the explanation, if any, received from the officer, within the specified time to the notice under sub-rule (1) and if no explanation is received, his report regarding the same for the consideration of the Panchayat. In case of an officer other than Secretary, along with the explanation the opinion of the Secretary or head of office, thereof, shall also be submitted by the President for the consideration of the Panchayat.
(4)
After considering the explanation or the report mentioned under sub-rule (3) the Panchayat may decide whether the disciplinary action against the concerned officer is to be dropped or continued.
(5)
In case whether the Panchayat decides to initiate disciplinary action against an officer under sub-rule (4) a memo of specific charges along with a statement of allegations based on charge or charges shall be issued to him and he shall be required therein to furnish written statement within fifteen days. The memo of charges shall be issued by the President in the case of Secretary and by the Secretary in the case of an officer other than the Secretary under the orders of the President.
(6)
Memo of charges shall be in the model form appended to these rules and shall be signed by the President or the Secretary, as the case may be.
(7)
Memo of charges shall be precise and in clear language and the date and time of occurrence of the incident wherever applicable shall be included therein.
(8)
While issuing of orders regarding disciplinary action, in the statement of allegations on which each charge is based, shall also refer to any other circumstance which is proposed to be considered.
(9)
A list of documents relied upon in framing the charges shall be listed out at the end of the statement of allegations.
(10)
Two copies of the memo of charges and statement of allegation shall be issued to the concerned officer and one copy shall be not back with his dated signature and kept in the file.
(11)
If no written statement is received within the period specified in the memo of charges, no reminder shall be issued to the concerned officer, and shall continue with further proceedings on the presumption that there is no written statement to be filled. Provided that in the case of application received for, extension of period, if the President is satisfied that reasons stated in the application are acceptable, such period may be extended to a period not exceeding fifteen days.
(12)
If at any stage of the further proceeding the Officer applies for the perusal and obtaining the copy of any document referred to in the list appended to the statement of allegations he may be allowed to perusal and obtain, copy of the documents if the President considers that such permission is not against public interest in due supervision.

6. Examination of written statement. — (1) The President shall submit the written statement if any, received within the stipulated time from the officer to the memo of charges issued to him under sub-rule (5) of Rule 5 and if no written statement is received, his report regarding the same for the consideration of the Panchayat. In the case of an officer other than Secretary, the President shall also submit written statement, the opinion of the Secretary or head of office therein for the consideration of the Panchayat.

(2) If, in the written statement received from an officer, it is requested to hear him in person, President shall hear him in person on behalf of the Panchayat and shall submit the matters informed by him along with written statement for the consideration of the Panchayat.

7. Imposition of minor penalty. — (1) Where the Panchayat after considering the written statement furnished by the concerned officer to the memo of charges issued under sub-rule (5) of Rule 5, or if no written statement is received, the report of the President in that regard, is satisfied that the concerned officer has committed the offence alleged against him and after considering the nature and gravity of the offence committed, may impose on him any one of the penalties mentioned in sub-rule (1) of Rule 4 and orders with signature shall be issued accordingly on behalf of the Panchayat by the President, in the case of Secretary and by the Secretary in the case of an officer not being the Secretary.

(2) An order issued under sub-rule (1), —

(a)
In the case of the Secretary, the President shall forward a copy with covering letter to the concerned appointing authority for implementation and for recording the details of penalty in his service register, to Government and if necessary to the Accountant General;
(b)
in the case of a Government employee of the State service, the Secretary shall forward a copy with covering letter to the concerned head of department for implementation and for recording the details of penalty in his service register, to the Government and to the Accountant General;
(c)
in the case of a Government officer of subordinate service the Secretary shall forward a copy with covering letter to the concerned head of office for implementation and for recording the details of penalty in his service register and if necessary to the concerned head of department;
(d)
in the case of Panchayat employee referred to in Section 180, if awarded a penalty except withholding of promotion the Secretary shall execute by entering the details in his service register and in the case of withholding of promotion a copy of that order shall be sent to the appointing authority.

8. Suspension. — (1) If the President is prima facie satisfied that an employee of the Panchayat referred to in Section 180, a Government Officer or employee of subordinate service whose service has been lent to the Panchayat has committed an offence of serious nature, includes misconduct or deserves major penalty, and allowing him to continue in service is against public interest and will obstruct the enquiry being conducted or intending to conduct against him, he may suspend such employee from service subject to detailed enquiry and disciplinary proceeding.

(2)
The concerned employee shall be entitled to subsistence allowance under Rule 55, Part I of the Kerala Service Rules, 1959, during the period of suspension.
(3)
The President shall report the order of suspension and matters leading thereto in the next meeting of the Panchayat and shall seek the approval of the Panchayat for the order. If the Panchayat does not approve the suspension, the order of suspension stands cancelled suo moto and the employee suspended shall immediately be reinstated in the employment and period of suspension shall be treated as duty.
(4)
The President shall immediately forward this copy of suspension order and the decision of the Panchayat thereon to the appointing authority.
(5)
In the manner without being an obstruction to disciplinary action against the suspended employee, the Panchayat may at any time reconsider his suspension and he may be reinstated to the employment.
(6)
The President shall complete the enquiry against the concerned employee within three months of issue of suspension order and shall submit the enquiry report for the consideration of the Panchayat.
(7)
The Panchayat may decide after considering the enquiry report to drop the disciplinary action in the name of the employee or as the case may be, to initiate disciplinary action under Rule 4 or to forward the enquiry report under Rule 10 to appointing authority or Government, as the case may be.
(8)
In the case share the Panchayat is imposing a minor penalty or dropping disciplinary action in the name of an employee and if the suspension of employee has not been withdrawn till then, together with imposing of mi nor penalty or dropping the disciplinary action, the suspension shall be withdrawn and how the period of suspension has to be treated shall be determined according to Rule 56 Part I of the Kerala Service Rules, 1959.
(9)
In the case where the enquiry report under Rule 10 is sent to appointing authority or Government, as the case may be and if the suspension has not been withdrawn till then the suspension shall be continued or withdrawn as per the direction of the appointing authority or Government.

9. Appeal and re-examination. — (1) The officer concerned may file an appeal in the form annexed as Appendix 2 to these rules against the order issued by the President or Secretary as the case may be, on behalf of the Panchayat imposing minor penalty on an officer under sub-rule (1) of Rule 7, before an officer authorised by the Government for this purpose within thirty days on receipt of such order:

Provided that if the authority is satisfied that there is sufficient reason for not filing the appeal within the specified time, the appeal received after the time may be considered.

(2)
On receipt of the appeal under sub-rule (1), the authority authorised shall call for and examine the connected records and shall after hearing in person the officer who preferred the appeal and the President on behalf of the Panchayat or any other person authorised by the Panchayat who imposed the penalty which being the ground for appeal, confirm, modify or cancel the order imposing such penalty or issue such orders as may deem fit.

(3) The Government may require the records relating to every order issued under sub-rule

(2)
either suo-moto or on application and may reconsider such order and pass appropriate order regarding it as they may deem fit:

Provided that no application for reconsideration of an order shall be considered if it is received by the Government after thirty days from the date of receipt of such order by the applicant:

Provided further that, an order adversely affecting an officer shall not be passed by the Government without giving an opportunity of being heard:

Provided also that the Government shall not suo-moto reconsider an order after one year from the date of the order.

10. Procedure on commission of offences which may result in imposing major penalties. — (1) If the President or the Panchayat believes that an officer has committed an offence which deserves any major penalty, the President, after conducting the enquiry against such officer or employee shall send the enquiry report together with the opinion of the Panchayat thereon to the appointing authority in the case of an employee of Panchayat referred to in Section 180 and shall send to the Government in the case of an officer or employee whose service has been lent to the Panchayat under sub-rule (1) of Rule 3.

(2)
The appointing authority or the Government shall examine in detail the report of the President and opinion of the Panchayat, as the case may be, and if necessary after hearing the President or the officer alleged in person shall take suitable decision regarding initiation of disciplinary action and that decision shall be intimated to the President.
(3)
In the case where the appointing authority or the Government decides to initiate disciplinary action against the officer the procedure contained in the Kerala Civil Service (Classification, Control and Appeal) Rules, 1960 shall be observed.
(4)
In the case where the alleged officer has been suspended from service under Rule 8, matters as to whether suspension is to be continued or how the period of suspension is to be reckoned shall be examined by the appointing authority or Government, as the case may be, and shall issue suitable order.
  1. Observation of provisions of other rules. — In the case of suspension, imposition of minor penalty and appeal, the procedure laid down in the Kerala Civil Service (Classification, Control and Appeal) Rules, 1960 and the Manual of Disciplinary Proceedings of Government of Kerala shall be applicable to matters not mentioned in Rules 4 to 10 and if there is any doubt or dispute arised regarding any of these, the decision of the Government shall be final.

     

  2. Confidential report. — (1) The President shall prepare the confidential report of the Secretary from time to time and send to the appointing authority.

     

(2)
The Secretary shall, prepare from time to time the confidential report of the employees of the Panchayat for whom it is directed as keep confidential reports and submit to the President for review and shall send to the appointing authority together with review report of the President.
(3)
The President may send report regarding the service of the Government officers or employees whose service has been lent to the Panchayat from time to time to the concerned appointing authority and the said report shall also be taken into account, while considering such officer or employee for promotion.

13. Granting of leave. — (l)The Secretary may grant leave including casual leave to the employees of Panchayat referred to in Section 180 subject to eligibility and the provisions of the Kerala Service Rules.

(2)
The President may grant casual leave to the Secretary and to the head of office and institutions which have been lent by the Government subject to eligibility.
(3)
The granting of leave except casual leave to officers referred to in sub-rule (2) subject to eligibility and the provisions of the Kerala Service Rules, shall be by the Government officer authorised for this purpose.
(4)
Granting of leave including casual leave subject to eligibility and the provisions of Kerala Service Rules to Government officer or employee not referred under sub-rule (2) whose service has been lent to Panchayat shall be by an officer authorised by the Government for this purpose.

(5) In the case where granting of leave except casual leave to any officer under sub-rules

(3)
and (4) is by a Government officer whose service has not been lent to Panchayat the leave application shall be sent to the said officer together with the recommendation of the President.

APPENDIX I

MODEL OF MEMO OF CHARGE [See sub-rule (6) of Rule 5]

MEMO OF CHARGE

Charge against Sri/Smt.................. (name) working in the post of.................. inthe (place of work, officer, institution etc.) under. ................................ Panchayat.

  1. It is seen that you, Sri/Smt ...................have committed the offence of............... (here enter the alleged offence or the substance of the offences, relevant date or dates and place).

     

  2. You are required to show cause, if any, in writing within fifteen days, from the date of receipt of this notice, as to why disciplinary action .should not be taken against you under Rule 4 of the Kerala Panchayat Raj (Control over Officers) Rules, 1997, and if no such statement is

     

received from you within the said period the matter will be proceeded with the presumption that you have nothing to offer in this matter.

3. A statement of allegations on which the above charge or charges is/are based is attached herewith.

Place ............. President/Secretary.Date ................ For ............. Panchayat.

APPENDIX II

[See sub-rule (1) of Rule 9]Appeal against disciplinary actions of. ..............Panchayat.

  1. Name and official address of the appellant :

     

  2. Number and date of the order :
    appealed against (copy shall be enclosed)

     

  3. Offence alleged for imposing penalty :

     

  4. Details of penalty awarded :

     

Reasons based for appeal (Enter the reasons in detail)

Place: Signature of the appellant. Date:

Explanatory Note

(This does not form part of the Notification, but is intended to indicate its general purport.)

As per sub-section (5) of Section 179, sub-section (9) of Section 180 and sub-section (3) of Section 181 of the Kerala Panchayat Raj Act, 1994 (13 of 1994), the Panchayat is competent to impose minor penalties on Secretary, any officer or employee of the Panchayat and Government Officers or employees whose service has been lent to the Panchayat, respectively. The government intend to make rules, presenting the procedure in the matter and specifying the controlling power of the Panchayat over the officers and in the matter of granting of leave. This Notification is intended to achieve the above object.