Vacancies in the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) have reached an “alarming level”, a parliamentary panel noted adding that it will “require decades” to fill the existing shortage.
In its report, the Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, and Law and Justice noted that almost all the key and strategic positions under the Union as well as the states are being manned by the IAS and persistent shortage of IAS officers ultimately affects governance in the country.
The panel cited vacancies as on January 1, 2016 which stand at 1,470 as against sanctioned strength of 6,396 in the Indian Administrative Service which is considered as the backbone of governance in the country.
“The Committee expresses its serious concern over persistent shortage of IAS officers and strongly recommends that all efforts be made to fill these vacancies,” it said.
It said lack of training capacity should not become a reason for non-filling of vacancies of IAS officers and if there is shortage of capacity in this regard, efforts should be made to enhance the capacity to train more IAS officers.
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The panel also underlined that Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration, where IAS officers are trained, has the capacity to train more than 180 officers.
The Committee said it fails to understand as to why lack of training capacity has been cited as one of the reasons for not filling the vacancies of IAS officers.
“On a perusal of Annual Report 2016-17 of the Ministry, the Committee observes that shortage of IAS officers in this country has been a perennial problem since 1951. But now the vacancy position has increased to an alarming level. With the present rate of recruitment it will require decades to fill the existing vacancies,” it said.