RTI Applications [sent / to be sent] 

Attendance in Central Secretariat / Departments / Offices

Draft RTI Application July, 2013

 

RIIF is an organization functioning from 2007.

Where system failures affecting efficient functioning in governance are noticed,

we reinvent standards already in vogue in the past or

trigger action to evolve new standards fitting to the present.

Kind attention is invited to Paragraph 1 to 5 of Chapter IV – Office Management of the Central Secretariat Manual of Office Procedure (CS-MOP) wherein it is inter alia prescribed that every member of the staff are to mark the attendance register both at the time of arrival and while leaving.  In this regard, the following information may please be furnished to us. 

1.     (a) Please let us know whether staffs other than ministerial staff [for example Appraising Officers posted to non-current seats] are exempted from marking attendance?

(b) If exempted, a copy of the relevant order may please be provided to us.

(c) If not exempted, whether attendance register is being maintained and marked promptly by all staff members everyday as per the procedure prescribed?

(d) If no attendance register is maintained, on the basis of what record an individual is treated to have attended office and paid salary for that day? Please provide authority therefor.

(e) What is the system put in place to find out staff who did not turn up for work or arrive later than the grace time but paid salary for the day?  [Para 1 of Chapter IV – Office Management].

2.     (a) Whether Group A officers are exempted from marking attendance?

(b) If exempted, a copy of the relevant order may please be provided to us.

(c) If not exempted, on the basis of what record an officer is treated to have attended office on a particular day and paid salary for that day?

(d) What is the system put in place to find out officers who did not turn up for work or arrive later than the grace time but paid salary for the day? 

3.     (a) Under what authority is any staff or officer permitted to engage an outsider to work proxy and get the work assigned to a staff / officer done with or without attending office herself/himself? [Paragraph 15 of Chapter IV – Office Management of the Central Secretariat Manual of Office Procedure (CS-MOP)]

(b) If not permitted, under whose orders [oral or written] such proxy are performing the work assigned to a staff / officer?

4.     (a) Whether Group A, B, C and D staff/officers are covered Central Secretariat Manual of Office Procedure (CS-MOP)?

        (b) If not any other ‘Office Procedure’ governing them.

5.     (a) Whether the time of logging on to the System is taken as marking of attendance for those who do customs clearance work under the EDI?

        (b) If not as to how their attendance is being regulated since officials who arrive inordinately late rush up the bills without literally checking anything thereby not doing justice to their calling? [System records would reveal that in a minute’s time all the keys are pressed in succession and the bills are moved from an officer’s queue.]

6.     (a) Is there any proposal pending to provide Biometric Fingerprint Attendance Marking Systems?

(b) If so, what is the present stage at which the matter stands?

(c) If no such proposal in the pipeline, whether it would be implemented in the near future?

 
 
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Proper Officer under the Customs Act, 1962

 
RTI Application sent on 13.02.2013 

Track Result for:ET096409995IN    

Booked at Srinivasanagar S.O (Kanchipuram)

Booked On 13/02/2013

Delivered at New Delhi G.P.O. 

Delivered on   16/02/2013

 

Our Reference No. 130401 Dated 13.02.2013 

To

Central Public Information Officer,

Central Board of Excise and Customs,

New Delhi

 

Respected CPIO, 

 

APPLICATION UNDER RIGHT TO INFORMATION ACT 2005

The Central Board of Excise and Customs, New Delhi vide Notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012, has inter alia assigned the functions in relation to Sub-sections (2), (3), (4) and (6) of Section 17 of the Customs Act, 1962 to the Superintendent of Customs & Central Excise/Appraiser and officers above their rank, as the ‘PROPER OFFICERS’. In this regard, please furnish the following information, with relevant authority. 

1.       The phrase ‘PROPER OFFICER’ alone is found in the Customs Act, 1962 and nowhere the phrase ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ is used.

(a) As such, whether the said notification prescribes more than one officer as ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ for a specified function?

(b) If so, are both the initiator of the function who renders only assistance and the next higher rank officer who ultimately considers all relevant facts and laws and takes a decision are ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ for a singular function? 

2.       At present the Appraiser initiates the verification process of re-assessment [as provided for u/s.17 (2)] in the Customs EDI system in respect of the Bill of Entry. When the Appraiser initiates a draft query in the Customs EDI System, to   require the importer to produce certain documents, [as provided for u/s.17 (3)] and forward the Bill of Entry to the AC/DC who alone considers and approves the query and sends to the Importer. 

(a)      In this context, who is the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ for this function? – Is it the Appraiser who initiated the verification & query process or the AC/DC who considered and approved the query? 

3.       Who is the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ for examination of imported goods u/s 17 (2) and for making an order permitting clearance of the goods for home consumption u/s 47(1) [i.e. Out of Charge order]? 

4.       Before issue of notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012, who was the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ with regard to the function where the Appraiser initiated the verification process of re-assessment [as provided for u/s.17 (2)] in the Customs EDI system in respect of the Bill of Entry? When the Appraiser initiated a draft query to   require the importer to produce certain documents, [as provided for u/s.17 (3)] in the Customs EDI System and forwarded the Bill of Entry to the AC/DC who alone considered and approved the query and sent to the Service Centre. 

(a) In this context, who was the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ for this function? – Was it the Appraiser who initiated the verification and query process or the AC/DC who considered and approved the query? 

5.       Who was the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ assigned with the function of examination of imported goods u/s 17 (2) and for making an order permitting clearance of the goods for home consumption u/s 47(1) [i.e.Out of Charge order] before issue of notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012? 

6.       Is a superior officer who ultimately signs in discharge of a function [mentioned in Notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012] which is initiated and put up by an officer/officers lower in rank to the ultimate signatory, the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ for that function? 

7.       As per Notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012 Appraiser and above is assigned with the function of re-assessment u/s 17 (4).  In the Customs EDI, the Appraiser initiates the re-assessment process as an assistant to the AC/DC who is the final authority to consider and take a decision.  In this situation,

(a) are both the Appraiser and AC/DC ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ and responsible for the re-assessment done or

(b)  the AC/DC alone is the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ and responsible for the re-assessment? 

8.       Whether there can be multiple ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ for a specified singular function where the officer senior in rank is assisted by one or more officers of lower rank?  For example u/s 110 an AC/DC leads the search party consisting Appraisers and Examiners who assist the AC/DC in the search and eventually the AC/DC takes a decision to seize the goods and seizes the same u/s 110 (1) as the ‘PROPER OFFICER’.   In this situation,

(a) whether the AC/DC alone is the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ or

(b) the Examiners, Appraisers and the AC/DC together ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ u/s 110 (1) read with Notification Notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012? 

9.       Is the ‘PROPER OFFICER’ for any specified function under Notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012 read with Section 2 (34) of the Customs Act, 1962 responsible for all his actions with regard to that function? 

10.     On the backdrop of phrases ‘AND ABOVE’ & ‘PROPER OFFICERS’ used in Notification No. 40/2012 Customs [NT] dated 2.5.2012,

(a)      who is ‘PROPER OFFICER’ when a superior officer exercises powers of a ‘PROPER OFFICER’ u/s 5(2) of Customs Act, 1962? 

          I have enclosed Indian Postal Order No. 03F 532166 dt. 8.2.12 for Rs.10/-, as initial requisition fee u/s 6(1) of RTI Act 2005. 

          Thanking you in anticipation for providing the information sought for at your earliest convenience. 

 

Yours faithfully, 

Principal Educator, RIIF

 

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Thanks to CBEC -   http://goo.gl/H34mw  [Proper officers in relation to the various sections of the Customs Act,1962 - Notification No. 40/2012-Customs (N.T.) New Delhi, dated the 2nd May, 2012]

RTI Application dt.13.12.11 sent by advocate to two Customs Commissionerates.
1. Please supply copy of Notification(s)/order(s) which is/are in force as on date, assigning functions as “Proper Officer” under various sections of the Customs Act, 1962 r/w Section 2 (34) ibid. to the officer of customs issued by the Board or the Commissioner of Customs in respect of your Commissionerate.
In this regard kind attention is drawn to the following:
SECTION 2. Definitions (34) “proper officer”, in relation to any functions to be performed under this Act, means the officer of customs who is assigned those functions by the Board or the [Commissioner of Customs];

2. Please supply copy of Notification(s)/order(s) which is/are in force as on date, the various designations of officers of customs appointed vide Section 4 of the Customs Act, 1962.
In this regard kind attention is drawn to the following:
SECTION 4. Appointment of officers of customs.— (1)The [Board] may appoint such persons as it thinks fit to be officers of customs.

3. Please supply copy of general or special order(s)/Notification(s) which is/are in force as on date, issued by the Commissioner of Customs, which is in force on date, empowering an officer of Customs to make arrest under Section 104 of the Customs Act, 1962 in the jurisdiction of your Commissionerate.
In this regard kind attention is drawn to the following:
SECTION 104. Power to arrest. – [(1) If an officer of Customs empowered in this behalf by general or special order of the Commissioner of Customs has reason to believe that any person in India or within the Indian customs waters has committed an offence punishable under section 132 or section 133 or section 135 or section 135A or section 136, he may arrest such person and shall, as soon as may be, inform him of the grounds for such arrest.]

4. Please supply copy of general or special order(s)/Notification(s) which is/are in force on date, issued by the Commissioner of Customs, which is in force on date, empowering an officer of Customs under Section 107 of the Customs Act, 1962.
In this regard kind attention is drawn to the following:
SECTION 107. Power to examine persons. – Any officer of customs empowered in this behalf by general or special order of the [Commissioner of Customs] may, during the course of any enquiry in connection with the smuggling of any goods, -
(a) require any person to produce or deliver any document or thing relevant to the enquiry ;
(b)examine any person acquainted with the facts and circumstances of the case.

5. Please supply copy of the Notification(s)/order(s) which is/are in force on date, declaring each designation of officer of Customs as ‘Gazetted Officer of Customs’ mentioned in Section 108 of the Customs Act, 1962.
In this regard kind attention is drawn to the following:
SECTION 108. Power to summon persons to give evidence and produce documents. – (1) Any Gazetted officer of Customs [* * *] shall have power to summon any person whose attendance he considers necessary either to give evidence or to produce a document or any other thing in any inquiry which such officer is making under this Act.