The Department of Personnel and Trainings (DoPT), Government of India has fixed January 31 as deadline for filing of Property Returns for all IAS officers of Jammu and Kashmir and rejected the misinterpretation of the order that they didn’t need to file the return this year.
“The IAS officers not filing the Property Returns would face problems at the time of empanelment and promotions. The filing of Property Returns is mandatory. A wrong message has gone that the IAS officers from J&K were not required to file Property Returns this year,” Union Minister in Prime Minister’s Office and DoPT, Dr Jitendra Singh said.
Dr Singh said the DoPT Ministry was engaged in drafting single form for all IAS officers/Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and others, who were required to fill Property Returns. As the form was under process of drafting, it has been misinterpreted that the officers need not to file Property Returns for the year 2016 by January 31, 2017, he said, adding the DoPT has directed all the officers to duly file their Property Returns on the old prescribe forms, which will be accepted till the new form under the Lok Pal Act is introduced.
Dr Singh said till the new form is introduced by the DoPT, the IAS officers were free to use the old prescribed form to file their Property Returns. Similarly, he added, the NGOs can file their Income Tax returns in the old format.
The Union Minister made it clear that the IAS officers had to file Property Returns as per Regular Recruit Rules on the old prescribed form by January 31 and any default on this account could create trouble for them at the time of empanelment to different ranks.
Even if a single year’s Property Return is missing, the officer will be in trouble at the time of empanelment,” he said making it clear that they have been given relaxation for filing Property Returns only from new form under the Lok Pal Act, which was still being drafted by the DoPT Ministry.
After amendments in the Lok Pal Act, a single form was prepared for filing of Property Returns by the IAS officers, NGOs and others. However, the NGOs sought certain amendments in the form as those on the Board of NGOs were also required to file the Property Returns.
“In view of NGOs’ plea, the form is now being revised and would be out after some time. Till then, we have directed all IAS officers and NGOs to go ahead with filing of their Returns on the forms, they were already using in the past,” the DoPT Minister said.
Meanwhile, the Members of Parliament (MPs) and MLAs would also continue to file their Property Returns under Public Representative Act till the new form is drafted and adopted by the DoPT Ministry.
Official sources said that some of the IAS officers haven’t been filing Property Returns.
“Their empanelment at the national level would be blocked even if the Property Return of one year is missing. Property Returns of all the years is mandatory for empanelment of the IAS officers,” they added.