ICAR Scientists: Pay Package & Career Advancement
Implementation of 7th CPC and revision of pay scales of employees of autonomous bodies has been delayed due to the reason that Ministry of Finance ordered implementation of the recommendations of the Expenditure Management Commission (EMC) which included review of autonomous bodies for various options such as their continuance of working with the government, merger with other autonomous bodies or closure of a particular autonomous body etc. Earlier in a reply on 9th December 2016 to a question asked by some MPs in Parliament, Minister of state for Finance indicated that an appropriate decision in regard to extension of the recommendations of the 7th CPC pertaining to pay matters of employees of Quasi-Government organizations, Autonomous organizations and Statutory Bodies etc. set up and funded/controlled by the Central Government, would be taken having regard to all relevant factors. Guidelines regarding extension of benefits of 7th CPC to employees by Ministry of Finance, vide OM F. No.1/1/2016-E-III(A), dated 13th January 2017 have been issued making clear that Government has decided to extend revised pay scales as per the Pay Matrix and pay fixation to the employees of autonomous bodies subject to following stipulations.
i) Service conditions esp., working hours, OTA payment etc. are similar to Central Govt. Employees,
ii) Employees have to opt for revised pay structure,
iii) Deductions have to be made on the basis of revised pay w.e.f. date on which employee opts to revised pay.
However, revised pay scales contained in Parts 'B' & 'C' of the schedule of the CCS (RP) Rules 2016,shall be applicable after concerned Administrative Ministry submits proposals to the Finance Ministry after examining justifications of such proposals. For those category of employees whose conditions of service and pay patterns are not similar, a separate Group of Officers including Financial Advisor of Administrative Ministry in each autonomous body will examine the proposal and ensure that benefits are not in excess to corresponding Central Govt. Employees. Final package will be submitted to get concurrence of Finance Ministry.
Central Government has to take decision on various allowances of Central Govt. employees and employees of the autonomous bodies also have to wait for Govt. decision on such allowances irrespective of pay revision.
Pay scales for ICAR Scientists are adaptions from UGC scales for teachers and these pay scales are reviewed by a select committee of ICAR and recommended for implementation after minor changes in original UGC pay scales. Since UGC has notified formation of Pay Review Committee on June 9, 2016 and instructed to submit report within six months of committee formation, pay revision of ICAR Scientists may take at least one and half year and supposed to be implemented in 2018. Great similarities exists between ICAR and UGC scales except few differences in terminology. ''Assistant Professor" is "Scientist", Associate professor as per UGC scales is Associate professor whether he possess Ph.D. or not but an ICAR Scientist with Ph.D. is Senior Scientist and without Ph.D. an ICAR Scientist is 'Scientist' only.
In the eighties, ICAR has its own pay structure and career advancement scheme. A system of five yearly assessment existed at that time. A non-Ph.D. had the opportunities to reach from S-1 (first scale) to S-8 etc. but adoption of UGC has blocked the career graph of all non-Ph.D. Scientists. One fails to understand the logic of adoption of UGC scales by ICAR that too half heartily and thereafter making changes in the designations, promotion policies etc.
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In several court cases, ICAR has reportedly submitted affidavit that seniority in ICAR is not determined by the qualification. Some scientists of ICAR appealed to grant them increments for Ph.D. but they were denied on the above plea. In the past, clarifications by the ICAR authorities were given in case of several representations made by the Senior Scientists to declare them senior over those who were in the same scale but did not have Ph.D. qualifications.
However, ICAR has taken U-turn while implementing 6th Pay revision. UGC has designated all lecturers(Selection Grade) in the pay scale of Rs 12000-18300 (5th pay) as Associate Professors after completion of 6 years on or after 1-1-2006. ICAR, on the other hand, designated all Scientists (Selection Grade, Rs 12000-18300) as Scientist who have completed 6 years on or after 1-1-2006.
Salient features of ICAR pay scales:
- Only three designations in respect of Scientists, namely, Scientist, Senior Scientist and Principal Scientist.
- The term “Research Grade Pay” (RGP) shall be used in place of "Grade Pay" for the Scientists.
- Different RGP's of Rs. 6000, Rs.7000, Rs. 8000, Rs.9000, and Rs.10000 have been approved as RGP for Scientists.
- Five non-compoundable advance increments shall be given at entry as Scientist on or after 1.9.2008 for the degree of Ph.D. obtained in the relevant discipline. At entry level, Scientists possessing M.Phil or post graduate degrees such as M.Tech/M. Sc.(Ag)/M.V.Sc/M.F.Sc (with 4 years bachelor and 2 years Masters programmes shall be given 2 non-compounded advance increments.
- Those who acquire these degrees in the relevant discipline while being in service shall be allowed three non-compounded advance increments for Ph.Ds and one increment for M.Phil or post graduate degree acquired in the relevant professional course.
- Those who have already availed the benefit of advance increments as per existing policy for acquiring Ph.D./M. Phil during service or who have availed benefit at entry level for possessing these degrees would not be entitled to benefits under this scheme.
- While the revision of pay will take effect from 1.1.2006, the allowances (except DA) and advance increments etc. shall take effect from 1.9.2008.Revised rate of travelling allowance shall be applicable from the date of notification.
- The ICAR Scientists holding veterinary qualifications (B.V.Sc./M.V. Sc.) would be paid non-practicing allowance in accordance with MOF, Dept. of Expr. OM no. 7(19)/2008-E.III(A) dated 30.2.2008.
It has created discrimination among the Scientists. Many Scientists in the Selection Grade (before implementation) were placed in Pay Band IV with RGP of 9000/- on 1-1-2006.On the other hand, many Scientists were assessed by the Departmental committees and promoted Senior Scientists w.e.f. 1-1-2006. However, by virtue of Ph.D.s, such Scientists were designated as Senior Scientists but placed in Pay Band III with RGP 8000/-. One fails to understand who is senior or supreme. A Scientist designated as "Senior Scientist" but placed in Pay band III (Rs 15600-37400) with RGP of Rs 8000/- or a Scientist in Pay Band IV (Rs 37400-67000) with RGP of 9000/-. Things have come to an interesting turn. 6th Pay Commission says that an employee with higher GP is senior but ICAR policy says that a Scientist wit less GP is senior to those who are non-Ph.Ds.
Even recent communications by ICAR to its Scientists says that Senior Scientists who have worked for 3 years in GP of Rs 9000/- are eligible for assessment to Principal scientist's post.Now things have turned more funny. A Scientist who got awarded Ph.D. in 2012 has to wait till 2015 to become Principal Scientist even if has served in RGP of 9000/- since 2006 but his junior Scientist who got Senior Scientist in 2006 and placed in RGP of 8000/- has become eligible in 2012 for assessment to Principal Scientist after being placed in RGP of 9000/- in 2009. If ICAR does not consider seniority based on qualification then why this anomaly in promotion policy.
In its earlier circular, ICAR has clearly stated that eligibility for direct selection is Senior Scientist or equivalent (Rs 12000-18300). Now this anomaly will compel the candidates suffering due to this to file appeals in the court and delay the process.
UGC has made a change in the status of lecturers (selection grade). Unlike ICAR, lecturers in the scale of Rs 12000-18300 were designated differently in the UGC governed colleges and universities.UGC designated them as "Associate Professor" but ICAR downgraded Scientists (Selection Grade) as Scientist.
Principal Scientist and Professor are equivalent positions. In IIT's, one higher pay scale is granted for same designation as to UGC teachers.
Revised ICAR pay scales
Pay Fixation of ICAR Scientists:
Pay in the revised scales is to be fixed as per provisions of CCS (RP) Rules, 2008.
In absence of Fitment tables, the following guidelines are to be followed:
i) Pay of Scientists in 8000-13500 scale to be provisionally fixed in PB III as per Fitment Table S-17 dated 30.8. 2008 (though GP is not mentioned by ICAR notification here but it has to be replaced by RGP)
ii) Pay of Scientists in 8000-13500 scale to be fixed provisionally in PB III as per Fitment Table S-19 dated 30.8. 2008 (though GP is not mentioned by ICAR notification here but it has to be replaced by RGP)
iii) Pay of Scientists in 12000-18300 scale or above to be fixed provisionally as follows:
a) The pay in Pay Band/Scale may be determined by multiplying the existing basic pay as on 1.1.2006 by a factor of 1.86 and rounding off the resultant figure to the next multiple of 10
b) If the minimum of the revised Pay band/scale is more than the amount arrived at as per (a) above the pay shall be fixed at the minimum of the revised Pay Band/Pay Scale
After release of Fitment tables, actual amount of arrears for scientists placed in PB IV may be more than that fixed in the above manner, if it happens so, the excess amount will be paid on receipt of Fitment Tables.
Career advancement scheme:
This scheme will be effective from 1.1.2009.
Eligibility to move from lower RGP to higher RGP:
1. From RGP 6000 to 7000:
a) 4 years for those possessing Ph.D.
b) 5 years for those possessing M. Phil/M.V. Sc/M.Sc (Ag)/M.F. Sc/M. Tech
c) 6 years for those neither having M. Phil nor Ph.D
2. From RGP 7000 to 8000:
5 years in RGP of 7000
3. From RGP 8000-9000:
Three years service in RGP of 8000
4. From RGP of 9000 to 10000:
Three years service in RGP of 9000 and after acquiring Ph.D.
Revised Pay of future recruits:
Sr. Scientists recruited directly as per revised qualifications (to be notified separately by ICAR) shall be placed in pay band Rs 37000-67000 + RGP of Rs 9000.
Sr. Scientists recruited as per existing qualifications shall be placed first in Pay band Rs 15600-39100 (with a minimum pay of Rs 22320) + RGP of Rs 8000 and after completion of 3 years to be placed in Pay band Rs 37400-67000 with RGP of Rs 9000
Principal Scientists/Project Coordinator or equivalents, recruited directly with revised qualification, to be notified by ICAR, shall be placed in 37400-67000 (Minimum Rs 43000) with RGP of Rs 10000.
Principal Scientists recruited on or after 1.1.09 with existing qualifications will be placed in Rs 37400-67000 (Minimum Rs 39690)with RGP 10000 ,
Note: All revised incentives for Ph.D. and M. Phil after 1.9.2008 and revised CAS will be effective from 1.1.2009
To help scientists, Senior Research fellows (SRF) and Research Associates are hired by ICAR. Following rates were applicable between 01-04-2007 and 31-03-2010
Senior Research Fellow:
1. Post Graduate in subjects other than Veterinary Science: Emoluments: Rs. 12000/- per month for 1st & 2nd year; Rs. 14000/- per month for 3rd year
2. Post Graduate in subjects other than Veterinary Science: Emoluments: Rs. 14000/- per month for 1st & 2nd year; Rs. 15000/- per month for 3rd year
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1. Post graduates: Rs 17000/-per month
2. Doctorates: Rs 18000/-per month
Above rates has been revised w.e.f. 01.04.2010 and currently applicable rates are as follows:
Senior Research Fellow:
1. Post Graduate in subjects other than Veterinary Science: Emoluments: Rs. 16000/- per month for 1st & 2nd year; Rs. 18000/- per month for 3rd year
2. Post Graduate in subjects other than Veterinary Science: Emoluments: Rs. 18000/- per month for 1st & 2nd year; Rs. 20000/- per month for 3rd year
3. Post graduates: Rs 23000/-per month
4. Doctorates: Rs 24000/-per month
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