Complaint Against Public Servants: Govt Offers Mechanism

   

SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday issued comprehensive guidelines for handling complaints against public servants to ensure a balance between good governance and protection against false or frivolous complaints.

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The order issued by the Jammu and Kashmir General Administration Department reads that despite previous instructions, public servants continue to face harassment from false, frivolous, anonymous, or pseudonymous complaints, which are increasingly common and affect their duties and decision-making.

The order reads, “Many times, these complaints, after verification, have been found to lack merit and have been dismissed accordingly. However, during this process, public servants performing their bona fide duties have faced unwarranted harassment and mental distress. This affects their decision-making, causing administrative inertia, which in turn adversely impacts the conduct of government business and public service delivery.”

The order further outlines measures for dealing with false complaints against public servants. It reads, “Legal action will be pursued under Section 182 of the Indian Penal Code, and prosecution initiated under Section 195(1)(a) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, through the appropriate public servant. Departmental measures will be considered against public servants who lodge false complaints. To support affected employees, assistance will be provided to approach the Crime Branch for criminal proceedings and to facilitate civil lawsuits for damages, including financial losses and emotional distress.”

Additionally, “Legal support will be offered through the Department of Law, Justice & Parliamentary Affairs. Formal inquiries will be conducted into complaints filed by registered organisations, and regular press notes will be issued to promote transparency. Cases involving publications will be investigated, with potential actions including reporting to the Press Council of India and stopping government advertisements,” it states.

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