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Odisha Revenue Service (ORS) Officers Continue to Suffer from ‘Pay Discrimination’

Author : Prasant K. Sahoo | Posted on: 2019-04-14

Odisha Revenue Service (ORS) cadre officials have been facing several problems pertaining to their service conditions and pay package since the inception of the feeder cadre in the administrative canvass of Odisha government. They have been put as class-II officials below the rank of Odisha Administrative Service (OAS) which is a class-I cadre under the JB category. The issue is being raised by the serving ORS officers since their appointment in the year 2015 (in pursuance of the advertisement of 2011). Thereafter as per advertisements published in 2015 & 2017, fresh batches of ORS officers have been appointed. Though previously in 2010 only a few number of officers were given ORS postings on an experimental basis.

 

It might be mentioned here that right now there are around 891 ORS officials who are engaged in different posts like Additional Tehsildars, Additional Collectors and Municipality Executive Officers etc.

 

The very fact that the ORS officers have been put into class-II category is resented by them as they claim that they are taking up equal responsibility which is similar to that of the OAS officers. Suffice to be mentioned here that most of the ORS officers have been posted as Addl. Tahsildars or Assistant Collectors with executive magistrate power. They shoulder almost equal responsibilities with that of their OAS counterparts who are posted as Tahsildars, particularly in tehsil offices. Apart from that they have been selected directly through the ‘common’ Odisha Civil Services examination conducted by the Odisha Public Service Commission (OPSC) which holds the exam for both ORS and OAS (and other class-I posts like OFS, OPS etc.) together and brings about a common merit list.


Odisha Revenue Service Association (ORSA), which is the representative body of the ORS officers, has raised before the government and the concerned minister several issues including hike in grade pay from Rs. 4,600 to Rs. 5,400 as per Seventh Pay Commission recommendations and most importantly the up-gradation of their rank from ORS to ORS-I cadre.

 

They claim that the government has already relaxed norms for the promotion of Revenue Inspectors (RIs) to ORS, from 10 years of job experience to 5 years only. So, in the same line the association (ORSA) demands relaxation in norms for promotion of ORS officials and to reduce it to 3 years against the current 6 years. Similarly, they have also sought for timely promotion and increment. While ORS cadre officials were supposed to get promotion to 287 Class-I posts laying vacant, only 40 have been accredited so far.

 

In between, Odisha Revenue Service Association (ORSA) has resorted to various protest mechanisms such as launching cease-work agitations, wearing black batches etc. to make the government aware about their problems. The ORSA office bearers have had also meetings with several high-ranking officials representing the GoO and also the Revenue Minister Mr. Maheswar Mohanty. But as of now no concrete promise or announcement has come from government sources with regard to their demands.

 

Observing the highest standards of service ethics, professional integrity and propriety, the ORS offices very recently decided to cancel their call for mass leave before the ongoing LS & Assembly election, and since been working for the election related works relentlessly. This action of theirs have got wide appreciation in the society, particularly among the educated masses. In return, they expect their genuine demands should be favourably considered by the government. Now they pin their hope on the new government in place after election which may look at the issue afresh and anew.

 

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Ranjan Kumar Das
So genuine
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