Welcome!

Welcome! The purpose of this blog is to share information and knowledge on Departmental Inquiry. Consultancy guidance and training services are available.
Important: Every effort has been taken to provide relevant and up-to-date information, however I do not take any responsibility for any action taken on the basis of the tips/write-ups in this blog.

You may visit following blogs:
- 'Quality Concepts and ISO 9001:2008 QMS Awareness' at http://iso9001-2008awareness.blogspot.in/
- 'ISO 9001 QMS Awareness' Blog in Hindi at http://iso9001awareness.blogspot.in/
- 'EMS Awareness' Blog at http://emsawareness.blogspot.in/
- Blog on 'Forthcoming ISO 9001:2015 QMS Awareness' at http://qmsawareness.blogspot.in
With best wishes,

Friday, August 4, 2017

Is it necessary to hold full fledged departmental inquiry for imposing a minor penalty?


Is it necessary to hold full fledged departmental inquiry for imposing a minor penalty?


An employee should be given an opportunity to defend himself when a charge sheet is issued for imposing a minor penalty. A full fledged inquiry may not be necessary for imposing a minor penalty.

With best wishes,

Keshav Ram Singhal

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

News - Reimbursement of TA/DA to serving/retired employees attending disciplinary/criminal proceedings as charged officer, Prosecution/Defence witnesses etc. in Public Sector Banks


News -

Reimbursement of TA/DA to serving/retired employees attending disciplinary/criminal proceedings as charged officer, Prosecution/Defence witnesses etc. in Public Sector Banks


The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) noticed that as per the instructions issued by the Indian Bank's Association (IBA) dated 25.04.2011, TA/DA was not permissible to the retired officer / employees for attending the departmental inquiry as Defence Assistants or Defence witnesses of the Public Sector Banks. As the IBA's guidelines were in violation of Ministry of Finance, GOI instructions and Commission's guidelines, the Commission vide letter dated 27.02.2015 advised Department of Financial Services (DFS) to examine the issues and to take corrective steps to remove anomalies and to ensure that IBA circular is in line with the Government of India and Commission's guidelines.

2. DFS has reported that the IBA, vide letter dated 19.11.2015 has since reviewed and revised the scheme and issued comprehensive instructions regarding reimbursement of TA/DA to serving/retired employees attending departmental/criminal proceedings as Charged Officer, prosecution/Defence witness etc. As per the revised circular, now payment of TA/DA to Defence Assistants /Defence Witnesses (both serving and retired) attending departmental inquiry and criminal proceedings before Court would be allowed.

- From the Coordination (Policy) Wing, Central Vigilance Commission (CVC)

Courtesy Source - VIGEYE VANI - Quarterly Newsletter Central Vigilance Commission - April-June 2016

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Training Handbook on 'Departmental Inquiry Awareness'


Dear friends,

Greetings!

People generally are afraid of departmental inquiry. People find difficulty in participating in departmental inquiry.

I have been associated with departmental inquiry and thus I have the opportunity to read books, generally voluminous books, related to departmental inquiry. During my service as an officer of a bank and also as an elected representative of the officers' association, I had opportunities to participate in departmental inquiries, sometimes as Presenting Officer on behalf of the management or sometimes as defence representative assisting the charged officer. Thus, I could gain experience to learn the insight of the departmental inquiry. With a view to share my knowledge and tips related to departmental inquiry, I have designed and developed a training handbook on 'Departmental Inquiry Awareness'. This is a small effort to create awareness on departmental inquiry.

No one should be punished without giving him an opportunity to defend himself and a judicial approach is necessary in the procedures of departmental inquiry. The procedure adopted must not only be fair and reasonable but should also bear a convincing appearance that justice has been done.

Contents of the Training handbook include the following:

# 01 - Preface

# 02 - An introduction on 'Departmental Inquiry Awareness' training

# 03 - General tips

# 04 - Tips for the inquiry officer

# 05 - Summarized procedure for inquiry proceedings (useful for DA and IO)

# 06 - Tips for the presenting officer

# 07 - Tips for the charged employee and the defence representative

# 08 - Legal practitioner as a DR

# 09 - Investigation

# 10 - Short notes and FAQs - The inquiry report, Natural justice in departmental inquiry, Bias in departmental inquiry, When a high court quashed the inquiry report, Useful quarterly magazine, Venue of the inquiry, What action when an employee gets employment by misrepresentation, Can DA differ with the IO findings, Unbecoming conduct, Inquiry conducted by a subordinate to the complainant, Agreeing or disagreeing of DA by the findings of the IO, Mass casual leave by employees, Assistance of an advocate, Perusal of documents/records on receipt of memo/show cause notice, Suspension, Representation by lawyers, Oath in departmental inquiry, Principle of natural justice, Who is competent to hold a departmental inquiry, Personnel officer as presenting officer, Ingredients of a charge sheet, Abusing b an employee, Departmental inquiry against an employee acquitted by a court of law, Labour court power under section 11A, Proposed punishment mentioned in charge sheet, Non-supply of list of witnesses along with charge sheet, Allegations against a superior, Can outsider be IO, Examining the management witness, Plea of victimisation, IO Report, When the CE admits the guilt, Confidence loss upon an employee, Adjournment of an inquiry, Who may be present at the inquiry, Ex-parte inquiry

# 11 - Specimen of documents and records - Inquiry officer communication, Disciplinary proceedings, IO's letter to custodian of documents

# 12 - Post-training test details

If you are interested to see the Preview of the Training Handbook, please send me an email. I will send a copy of the same.

Thanking you,

Keshav Ram Singhal

Email
keshavsinghalajmer@gmail.com
or
krsinghal@rediffmail.com

One more request - Please share this message with friends in your network, so that more people may know about the Training Handbook.





Tuesday, September 15, 2015

INVESTIGATION


INTRODUCTION

An investigation is an action or process of investigating something or someone (may be crime, misconduct, problem, statement, etc.) especially to discover the related facts and the truth. It is a formal or systematic examination, study or research of the case.

Before initiating a departmental inquiry against an employee, management (generally the DA) wishes to confirm the misconduct, its gravity and persons involved, for which an investigation is conducted. Failure to properly investigate any incident in the organization's workplace can be costly. It may be important to investigate a matter to know:
- Who were involved?
- What were the facts? What happened?
- Where happened?
- When happened or committed?
- Why committed or why happened? (System deficiencies may be noticed)
- How committed?

To know the basis facts, it is usually better to investigate.

Step-by-Step Process

Following step-by-step process may be useful:

Step 1 - Determine whether an investigation is necessary. Appropriate authority should decide.

Step 2 - Determine an investigating officer - The person selected as an investigating officer should not be involved in the case. He should be independent. Appropriate authority should issue relevant orders.

Step 3 - Collecting relevant information - The investigating officer should collect relevant documents and information related to the case.

Step 4 - Determine date, time and place of investigation - The investigating officer should take appropriate decision with regard to date, time and place of investigation and inform to concerned persons.

Step 5 - Conduct investigation - Interview individuals with knowledge of facts. Written statements may be asked. A good approach is to ask open-ended questions that invite a person to provide information. Listen carefully to responses, and follow-up with narrower questions. Also ask each person to provide any related documents, if any, they have. Avoid close-ended questions. A better approach to use 5W1H (What, Where, Why, When, Who and How)questions.

Step 6 - Prepare investigation report - The investigating officer should prepare an investigating report containing facts gathered during interviews and written statements and by looking to the relevant documents. Analyze inconsistent or conflicting information and conclude your report with the investigation outcome.

Step 7 - Submit report - The investigating officer should submit the investigation report along with relevant documents to the authority.

With best wishes,

Keshav Ram Singhal

For Training Handbook on Departmental Inquiry Awareness, Please Click Here

Abbreviation

IO = Inquiry Officer / Enquiry Officer / Inquiring Authority
PO = Presenting Officer
DR = Defence Representative
CE = Charged Employee / Charged Officer
DA = Disciplinary Authority
AA = Appellate Authority

Sunday, March 8, 2015

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION - 20




What will be the effect if the proposed punishment is mentioned in the charge-sheet as issued to an employee?

Mere mentioning of the proposed punishment in the charge-sheet will not cause any prejudice against an employer. On the contrary, a CE under the given circumstances will know the gravity of the misconduct alleged against him.

With best wishes,

Keshav Ram Singhal

Abbreviation

IO = Inquiry Officer / Enquiry Officer / Inquiring Authority
PO = Presenting Officer
DR = Defence Representative
CE = Charged Employee / Charged Officer
DA = Disciplinary Authority
AA = Appellate Authority

Friday, March 6, 2015

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION - 19



Under what circumstances a labour court can alter the punishment awareded to an employee by his employer?

Under section 11-A of the Industrial Disputes Act,1947,a labour court (and also tribunal and national tribunal) has the power to alter punishment in those cases where the punishment is so harsh as to suggest victimization.

Section 11A in The Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 is as under:
"11A. 4 Powers of Labour Courts, Tribunals and National Tribunals to give appropriate relief in case of discharge or dismissal of workmen.- Where an industrial dispute relating to the discharge or dismissal of a workman has been referred to a Labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal for adjudication and, in the course of the adjudication proceedings, the Labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, is satisfied that the order of discharge or dismissal was not justified, it may, by its award, set aside the order of discharge or dismissal and direct reinstatement of the workman on such terms and conditions, if any, as it thinks fit, or give such other relief to the workman including the award of any lesser punishment in lieu of discharge or dismissal as the circumstances of the case may require: Provided that in any proceeding under this section the Labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, shall rely only on the materials on record and shall not take any fresh evidence in relation to the matter.]"

With best wishes,

Keshav Ram Singhal

Abbreviation

IO = Inquiry Officer / Enquiry Officer / Inquiring Authority
PO = Presenting Officer
DR = Defence Representative
CE = Charged Employee / Charged Officer
DA = Disciplinary Authority
AA = Appellate Authority

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION - 18



Is there any bar on initiating disciplinary proceedings (departmental inquiry) against an employee who is acquitted by a criminal court?

No. Acquittal of the accused employee in a criminal case is no bar for departmental inquiry or disciplinary proceedings. The degree or standard of proof required for conviction in a criminal prosecution should be such as to put beyond the pale of doubt the guilt of the accused..

With best wishes,

Keshav Ram Singhal

Abbreviation

IO = Inquiry Officer / Enquiry Officer / Inquiring Authority
PO = Presenting Officer
DR = Defence Representative
CE = Charged Employee / Charged Officer
DA = Disciplinary Authority
AA = Appellate Authority