Quota hiked by 37, from 260 to 297 officers
The Centre has cleared a proposal from the Narendra Modi-led Gujarat government to increase the state’s quota of Indian Administrative Services (IAS) officers from 260 to 297. This is the first expansion of the state’s IAS cadre in nearly two decades.
“The state government had pro-actively begun working in 2012 to strengthen its IAS cadre and the Centre has now given its nod to expand it by 37,” said K Srinivas, secretary (General Administration).
“Our requirement was higher than 37. But this too is a very welcome change,” said an official.
“With the additional strength of IAS officers, we are now set for smooth handling of new challenges, including formation of new districts and talukas.”
The move comes at a time when the state is witnessing administrative changes on a large scale. The state government has in principle given nod for formation of seven new districts and 17 new talukas from January 26, which would require more IAS officers.
Also, three top IAS officers, including chief secretary A K Joti retried, on January 31. Nine more IAS officers are going to retire in the next few months.
In nearly two decades, this is the first expansion of the IAS cadre in Gujarat, which had brought down the number of IAS officers from 253 in 1989 to to 236 by mid-nineties.
With the expansion, the state government is set to overcome the shortage of officers, especially in key higher posts. The expansion will also boost the morale of the IAS officers given the fact that promotion quota is set at 33 per cent of number of directly recruited officers. As the state can now absorb more officers in direct recruitment, the number of officers being promoted to the IAS cadre is also set to go up in the coming years.