Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on Friday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi opposing the proposed amendments to service rules related to IAS officers on the ground that they are against the spirit of federalism and if implemented may lead to "collapse" of administrative system of states.
The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) recently proposed changes in the Indian Administrative Service (Cadre) Rules, 1954, that will take away the power of states to override the Union government's request for seeking officers on central deputation.
In the letter to PM, Baghel said the amended rules may put officials posted in states in dilemma in discharging their duties and may lead to a situation of instability.
“The Government of India has proposed amendments to the All India Services Rules and sought opinion from states in this regard.
The proposed amendments would enable the Centre to unilaterally post the all India services officers on central deputation without getting consent of states and the concerned officer, which is against the federal spirit adopted and outlined in the Constitution,” he said.
In Chhattisgarh, the officers of All India Services cadres have been discharging their responsibilities in various important administrative works, including law and order, eradication of Naxal violence, all round development of the state and forest conservation, the Congress CM said.
“As a result of the amendments in the service rules, it is natural that these officers, who are posted in various important capacities right from districts to the state-level, would feel a sense of instability and ambiguity.
"They would be in dilemma while discharging their duties and due to political interference it will not be possible for them to work impartially, particularly at the time of elections.
It may lead to collapse of the administrative system in states and a situation of instability could be created," Baghel added.
The CM said provisions already exist in the current rules to ensure a coordination between state governments and the Centre.
Apprehending the possibility of misuse of the amended rules in the near future, Baghel said, “There were many instances in the past wherein officers of All India Services cadre were targeted unnecessarily.
There are adequate provisions in the present rules for maintaining a balance and coordination between state governments and Centre.
The Chhattisgarh government strongly opposes any amendments in the existing rules, the CM said.
The Centre's move has already evoked a sharp criticism from West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has written to the PM urging him to roll back the proposal claiming it will affect the states' administration.