How to conduct/defend Departmental Inquiries?

Personal Website of R.Kannan
How to Conduct/Defend Departmental
Inquiry - Introductory Articles

Home Table of Contents Feedback




Refer articles
relating to


Title Page- Departmental Enquiry

Module: 1 - Introductory Articles
Table of Contents
  1. Title Page- Departmental Enquiry - Content Description

  2. Evolution of Departmental Inquiry Concept in India

  3. How to Conduct/Defend Departmental Inquiries - Preface & First Page

  4. Positive Approach - Part: 1 - Promoting Employees as Human Capital

  5. Positive Approach - Part: 2 - Management By Objectives (MBO)
    (The Team Approach to Participatory Management)

Content Description

Departmental Inquiries (DI), also called Disciplinary Proceedings, against Officer employees are regularly conducted in Public Sector Undertakings and in particular in Nationalised Banks. DI is a powerful tool, combining together the powers to prosecute and to adjudicate at a single point. Those conducting disciplinary inquiries have to adhere to objective quasi-judicial standards. Such inquiries conducted by nationalised banks are statutory proceedings, as the regulations (commonly called DA Regulations), empowering nationalised banks to conduct departmental inquiries are formulated by virtue of powers conferred on the Banks' Management under provisions of the Banking Companies (Acquisition & Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1970. The validity of these inquiries depend on the objectivity adhered to in the proceedings and on the extension of the Principles of Natural Justice to the delinquent officers. An effort is made in these pages to provide useful guidelines for conducting such inquiries and to avoid pitfalls commonly occurring. The guidelines are intended to be of value both for those who conduct inquiries and to those who face them and defend themselves.

Titles under Part-1 of the table to the left are relevant to all. The basic information about a departmental inquiry is dealt with in these chapters. Of particular relevance is the responsibility to accept a quasi-judicial approach by the authorities conducting the inquiry and duly extending bonafide process with due diligence of extending principles of natural justice to the charge sheeted officer. There is no scope under the regulations for a subjective approach, as such an approach will nullify the inquiry process. The DA Regulations of Banks and other public sector organizations, as well as the Central and State Governments are statutory in character and the bonafides of the inquiry process can be challenged in High Courts/Supreme Court of India.

Part-2 deals with role profiles of individual functionaries, assigned specific responsibilities in the conduct of inquiries from the management's side, as also for the charged officer and defence assisting officer to explain and plead for the defence of the charge-sheeted officer. Each one concerned is governed by a statutory responsibility for ensuring objective process or statutory protection against subjective process. The Disciplinary authority has to reconcile bonafide HRD objects of the organisation while doing justice to his statutory assignment. When the whole process is carried out honestly and in a transparent manner, it reveals that the organization is having an enlightened accountability policy. It should dispel a doubt in the minds of the officers/employees about security of their career. DA regulations should not come in their way as long as they carry out their assignments in a principled manner.

The DA regulation as statutorily made out is like a bare act. It is the duty of the management to give detailed guidelines on each aspect of the process involved so that there is uniformity of approach with regards to different Disciplinary Authorities, Inquiry Officers and presenting officers and there is no scope for arbitrary implementation. The model for such a guidelines is the detailed Manual of CVC.

Of particular importance is the role of the investigating officer and that of the Presenting officer. They should not turn blood-hounds, but truth is the objective and fairplay is the goal. Detailed guidelines are therefore given about the duties and responsibilities of the presenting officer.

Part -3 gives specialised solutions to specific issues involved in the different stages of conducting such inquiries. The objective of this part is to enable persons interested to make selective reference to these pages, at appropriate points of time and get the benefit of the guidelines, instead of providing a single unduly lengthy narrative covering 'A' to 'Z' under a common head. This approach is adopted to provide greater clarity to the topics, to enable partial reference to the relevant subjects at the needed time of

Part -4 pinpoints how the system can be abused by Banks' management for their own particular purposes. It is for the collective wisdom of officers of nationalised banks to focus attention on these violations and seek remedies through collective action, so that provisions intended for establishing cleanliness and purity in the organization are not put to unsavory purposes.

While effort has been made to cover all relevant information, still there are quite a few material information, which are critical, but may be needed in peripheral contingencies. These are covered separately under head FAQ. Those interested may view these pages. FAQ also provides an avenue for future additions based on queries/suggestions received

I have a special message to persecuted charge sheeted officers, as also to officer bearers of Bank-Officers' Associations and to all officers of nationalised banks in general. Please access the respective messages using the links placed below and favour your response.


- - - : ( Evolution of Departmental Inquiry Concept in India ) : - - -

Top                          Next

[..Page Last Updated on 20.11.2004]<>[chkd-apvd-ef]
1