Many Kashmir Administrative Services (KAS) cadre officers have occupied top administrative positions in Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory, which are only supposed to be for IAS officers. Moreover, the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) has written a letter addressing the JK UT administration to follow guidelines prescribed under All India Service Rules in this connection.
Sources in the department said that according to the rules, KAS cadre officers can’t work as District Magistrates until they get inducted as IAS. However, there are many KAS officers in J&K who have been posted as DDCs and it is clearly in defiance with the rules. KAS officers who get appointed to various administrative posts at the district level such as Sub Divisional Magistrate or Additional Deputy Commissioners and later they can be sent to the IAS officer ranks after working as the KAS officer for a specific time period but in recent times, Govt had posted many of its favourite KAS officers as Deputy Commissioners.
Sources said that previous regimes interfered with the rules for their benefits and convenience as they would post their favourite KAS offices as Deputy Commissioners. He referred to an incident in 1984 when an IAS officer of UP cadre who was sent in Jammu and Kashmir was sent back to his state by the then political leadership.
All India Service Rule 8 clearly states that every cadre post has to be filled by a cadre officer. However, rule 9 permits temporary appointment of non-cadre officers to cadre posts with a condition that only if the vacancy is expected not to last more than three months, or a suitable cadre officer is unavailable for filling the vacancy. Moreover, even after fulfilling these conditions, the state government should take permission of the central government before appointing a non-cadre officer to a cadre post.
When senior officers of union government were asked why KAS officers are holding some posts of DC in place of IAS officers, they replied that the union government has directed JK administration for same.