The Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964
RULE 5. TAKING PART IN POLITICS AND ELECTIONS:
Government of India Decisions
(1) Participation of Government servants in political activities
Doubts have been raised recently as to the scope of Rule 23 (i) of the Government Servants Conduct Rules (now Rule 5) which lays down that no Government servant shall take part in, subscribe in aid of, or assist in any way, any political movement in India or relating to Indian affairs. According to the Explanation (not in the new rule) to that clause, the expression “political movement” includes any movement or activities tending directly or indirectly to excite disaffection against, or to embarrass, the Government as by law established or to promote feelings of hatred of enmity between classes of His Majesty’s subjects or disturb the public peace. This explanation is only illustrative and is not intended in any sense, to be an exhaustive definition of “political movement”. Whether or not the aims and activities of any organization are political is a question of fact which has to be decided on the merits of each case. It is, in the opinion of Government, necessary, however, that the Government servants under the Ministry of Finance etc. should be warned that –
(a) it is the duty of the Government servant who wishes to join, or take part in the activities of any association or organization positively to satisfy himself that its aim and activities are not of such a nature as are likely to be objectionable under Rule 23 of the Government Servants’ Conduct Rules (now rule 5); and
(b) the responsibility for the consequences of his decision and action must rest squarely on his shoulders and that a plea of ignorance or misconception as to Government’s attitude towards the association or organization would not be tenable.
It should also be impressed on them that, in cases where the slightest doubt exists as to whether participation in the activities of an association or orgaisation involves as infringement of Rule 23 (now Rule 5), the Government servant would be well advised to consult his official superiors.
[MHA OM No. 25/44/49-Ests (A), dated 17.09.1949]
(2) Attendance by Government servants at political meetings
Attention is invited to the Ministry of Home Affairs Office Memorandum No. 25/44/49-Ests.(A), dated the 17th September (Decision No. 1 above), dealing with the scope of Rule 23 (i) of the Government Servant’s Conduct Rules (now Rule 5) which lays down that no Government servant shall take part in, subscribe in aid of, or assist in any way, any political movement in India.
2. Enquiries have been received as to whether attendance by a Government servant at public meetings organized by political parties would amount to participation in a political movement within the meaning of the rule referred to. Even in regard to this narrower question the position must necessarily remain as stated in the Office Memorandum referred to in paragraph 1, viz:-
(i) that whether or not the conduct of any particular nature amounts to participation in a political movement is a question of fact to be decided on merits and in the circumstances of each particular case; and
(ii) that the responsibility for the Government Servant’s conduct must rest squarely on his shoulders and that a plea of ignorance or misconception as to Government’s attitude would not be tenable.
3. The following observations may, however, be of assistance to Government servants in deciding their own course of action:-
(i) Attendance at meetings organized by a political party would always be contrary to Rule 23 (i) of the Government Servants’ Conduct Rules (now Rule 5) unless all the following conditions are satisfied:-
(a) that the meeting is a public meeting and not in any sense a private or restricted meeting;
(b) that the meeting is not held contrary to any prohibitory order or without permission where permission is needed; and
(c) that the Government servant in question does not himself speak at, or take active or prominent part in organizing or conducting, the meeting.
(ii) Even where the said conditions are satisfied, while occasional attendance at such meetings may not be construed as participation a political movement, frequent or regular attendance by a Government Servant at meetings of any particular political party is bound to create the impression that he is a sympathizer of the aims and objects of that party and that in his official capacity he may favour or support the members of that particular party. Conduct which gives cause for such an impression may well be construed as assisting a political movement.
(iii) Government servants have ample facilities through the medium of the press to keep themselves informed regarding the aims, objects and activities of the different political parties and to equip themselves to exercise intelligently their civic rights e.g. the right to vote at elections to Legislature or Local Self Government institutions.
[MHA OM No. 25/44/49-Ests.(A), dated 10.10.1949]
(3) Actions not amounting to contravention of rule 5 (4)
The following action by a Government servant does not amount to contravention of Rule 5(4):-
(i) Making normal arrangement during election tours of Ministers to enable them to carry out their responsibilities as Ministers;
(ii) arrangements by district officers for affording normal courtesies and security to Ministers on their visits connected with election campaign.
[MHA OM No. 25/59/51-Ests, dated 05.09.1951]
(4) Bharat Sewak Samaj – Permission to central Government servants to join
Ministries are aware that the Bharat Sewak Samaj is a nationwide, non-official and non-political organization recently started at the instance of the Planning Commission with the object of enabling individual citizens to contribute, in the form of an organized cooperative effort, to the implementation of the National Development Plan.
2. The Government of India are of the opinion that in view of the non-political and non-sectarian character of the Bharat Sewak Samaj and the nature of work in which it will be engaged, Government servants, should, if they so wish, be encouraged to join the organization and to participate in its activities provided this can be done without detriment to the proper discharge of the normal official duties. Ministries of Finance etc. are, therefore requested to observe the following instructions in this matter:-
(1) Government servants wishing to join the Bharat Sewak Samaj should obtain prior permission from the appropriate Head of Office or Department concerned.
(2) Permission should be freely granted, provided the Head of the Office or Department satisfies himself in each case that participation in the Samaj’s activities will not interfere with the due discharge by the Government servant concerned of his official duties. If actual experience in any individual case or class of cases shows that this condition cannot be satisfied, the permission already granted may be revoked.
(3) It should be made clear to all Government servants concerned that permission to participate in the activities of the Bharat Sewak Samaj will not absolve them from the due observance at all times of all the rules and instructions relating to the conduct and behaviour of Government servants, etc.
[MHA OM No. 25/49/52-Ests., dated 11.10.1952]
(5) Elections – role of Government servants and their rights
(1) Attention is invited to rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules which lays down that a Government servant should not canvass or otherwise interfere or use his influence in connection with, or take part in, any election to a legislative body. There is however, no bar against a Government servant who is qualified to vote at such election, exercising his right to vote, provided that, if he does so he does not give any indication of the manner in which he proposes to vote or has voted.
The above rule clearly prohibits proposing or seconding by a Government servant of a candidate for election, as such action would constitute “taking part in an election” within the meaning of rule 5 (4), proposing or seconding being an essential preliminary to an election. The Supreme Court decided recently in a case that the mere proposing or seconding by Government servants of nominations of candidates at elections is not forbidden under the Election Law. The question has been raised whether this decision of the Supreme Court implies that Government servants are free to propose or to second the candidature of any one standing for an election. The position is that the Supreme Court has only decided the question whether the election of a candidate whose nomination paper has been proposed and/or seconded by a Government servant can be declared void merely for that reason. They had held that as Government servants are not in the excluded category, it follows that so far as section 123 (8) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, is concerned they are not disqualified from proposing or seconding a candidate’s nomination. The question before them was whether section 123(8) took away from Government servants that which section 33(2) of the Act had given to them. On a construction of the Act they held that it did not. That decision in no manner affects the obligation of Government servants under rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules for which he may be suitably penalized in accordance with the rules.
[MHA Memo No. 25/59/52-Ests dated 30.06.1955]
(6) Reports under Rule 5 (2)
Reports under Rule 5 (2) should be submitted by a Government servant to him immediate superior who will forward them through the normal channels to the authority competent to remove or dismiss him from service. Except where such authority requires guidance or clarification from a higher authority, it shall consider the report and pass appropriate orders. If it is proposed to impose any penalty the procedure prescribed in the CCS (CCA) Rules, should be followed.
[MHA OM No. 25/40/55-Ests. (A), dated 22.02.1956]
(7) Participation of Government servants in the Indo-Foreign cultural organizations
The Government of India have had under consideration the question whether Government servants should be allowed to participate in the activities of Indian-Foreign Cultural Organisations such as the German-Indian Association, the Indo-Soviet Cultural Society, etc. The matter has been considered in consultation with the Ministry of External Affairs and the conclusion reached is that there is objection in principle to Government servants becoming members or office holders of such organizations despite the fact that their objectives may be praiseworthy and unobjectionable. One of the reasons is that when foreign dignitaries relating to a particular organization come to India, addresses are often presented by these organizations. In some cases it may not be desirable for Government servants to be associated with such addresses, as they are bound to be as members or as office bearers. Some of these cultural organizations may not be very important or influential while others are very active and on occasions take a political stand which may be embarrassing to Government servants. In view of these considerations it has been decided that while such organizations may, in suitable cases, be looked upon with favour and assisted, the association of Government servants with such organizations should be avoided.
[MHA OM No. 25/35/56-Ests.(A), dated 24.01.1957]
(8) Book Clubs run by Foreign Agencies
Please see Government of India decision No. (7) under rule 13.
(9) Moral Re-armament movement – joining of by central Government servants
The Government of India have had under consideration the question whether central Government servants should be permitted to become members and take part in the activities of Moral Rearmament Movement. Government have decided that central Government servants should not associate themselves with my activities of the Moral Re-armament Movement in their official capacity, or with such of the activities as are political or have a political slant, even in their individual capacity. For the rest they are advised to be circumspect and so ensure that even in their individual capacity they do not do anything which may be construed or easily misconstrued as participation in political activities.
2. For associating themselves with the activities of the Moral Re-armament Movement, central Government servants should keep their Head of the Department informed who, having due regard to administrative requirements will be free to ask any Government servant to dissociate himself from the activities of the Movement.
[MHA OM No. 25/10/64-Ests.(A), dated 04.07.1964]
(9A) Participation of Government servants in the activities of Moral Rearmament Movement-Review of instructions
Reference is invited to the Ministry of Home Affairs OM No. 25/10/64-Ests.(A) dated 4th July, 1964 wherein some restrictions have been imposed on the Government servants associating themselves with the activities of Moral Rearmament Movement.
2. These instructions have been reviewed. After careful consideration, it has been decided to withdraw these instructions with immediate effect. It is, however, clarified that while associating with the activities of the Moral Rearmament Movement, the Central Government servants should ensure that they do not do anything which may be construed or easily misconstrued as participation in political activities, keeping in view the provisions of Rule 5 of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964.
[Deptt. Of Pers. & Trg. O.M. No. 11013/13/98-Estt. (A) dated 24th February, 1999]
(10) Sanyukta Sadachar Samiti – Permission to Central Government servants to join
The Government of India have had under consideration the question whether central Government servants should be permitted to become members and take part in the activities of the Sanyukta Sadachar Samiti – the Sanyukta Sadachar Samiti is a non-Official, non-political and non-sectarian organization recently started with the objects mainly of creating a social and moral climate to discourage anti-social and corrupt practices and of developing the will and capacity of the people to fight and eradicate corruption in all forms.
2. In view of the non-political and non-sectarian character of the Sanyukta Sadachar Samiti, it has been decided that Central Government servants should be free to join the Samiti, provided that their association with the Samiti is without detriment to the proper discharge of their normal official duties or infringement of the Government Servants Conduct Rules. Government servants as members of the Samiti should restrict their activities to the improvement of the ethical standards and the moral tone of society only and should not use the forum of the Samiti to lodge information or complaints against Government servants or Government agencies.
3. For becoming members of the Sanyukta Sadachar Samiti, no prior permission of the Government will be necessary, but such membership should be with the knowledge of the Head of the Department concerned.
[MHA OM No. 25/21/64-Estt. (A), dated 15.07.1964]
(11) Foreign language classes conducted by Indo-Foreign cultural organizations – joining of by the Government servants
The question of regulating the participation of Government servants in foreign language classes conducted by Indo-Foreign cultural organizations like the German-Indian Association, Alliance Francaise de Delhi, Indo-Soviet Cultural Society etc. has been considered by Government and it has been decided that Government servants desirous of joining such classes should obtain prior permission from the Ministry or Office in which they are serving.
2. * * * *
3. Ministry of Finance etc., are requested to bring the contents of para 1 of this Office Memorandum to the notice of all Government servants under their control, separately. Para 2 is intended for the guidance of administrative authorities only (not reproduced).
[MHA OM No. 25/4/65-Ests.(A), dated 18.05.1966]
(12) R.S.S. and Jamaat-e-Islami – participation by the Government servants in the activities of
The attention of the Ministry of Finance etc., is invited to the provisions of sub-rule (1) of Rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964 under which no Government servant shall be a member of, or be otherwise associated with, any political party or any organization which takes part in politics nor shall he take part in, subscribe in aid of, or assist in any other manner, any political movement or activity.
2. As certain doubts have been raised about Government’s policy with respect to the membership of any participation in the activities of the Rashtriya Swayam Sewak Sangh and the Jamaat-e-Islami by Government servants, it is clarified that Government have always held the activities of these two organizations to be of such a nature that participation in them by Government servants would attract the provisions of sub-rule (1) of Rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rule, 1964. Any Government servant, who is a member of or is otherwise associated with the aforesaid organizations or with their activities is liable to disciplinary action.
[MHA OM No. 3/10/(S)/66-Ests.(B), dated 30.11.1966]
(12A) Reference decision (12) above, it is requested that –
(a) the provisions thereof may be brought to the notice of all Government servants again; and
(b) action should invariably be initiated against any Government servant who comes to notice for violation of the instructions referred to above.
[MHA OM No. 7/4/70-Est.(B), dated 25.07.1970]
(12B) Attention of the various Ministries is also drawn to this Ministry’s OM No. 3/10/(S)/66-Estt.(B) dated the 30th November, 1966 wherein it was clarified that the Government have always held the activities of both the Rashtriya Swayam Sewak Sangh and the Jammat-e-Islami to be of such a nature that participation in them by Government servants would attract the provision of sub-rule (1) of Rule 5 of the Central Civil Service (Conduct) Rules, 1964 and that, any Government servant, who is a member of or is otherwise associated with the aforesaid organizations or with their activities, is liable to disciplinary action.
2. In the context of the current situation in the country the need to ensure secular outlook on the part of Government servants is all the more important. The need to eradicate communal feelings and communal bias cannot be over-emphasized.
3. No notice should be taken by Government and its officers, local bodies, state-aided institutions of petitions or representations on communal basis, and no patronage whatsoever should be extended to any communal organization.
4. Ministry of Finance etc., are therefore, requested to specially bring once against to the notice of all Government employees, working in or under them, the above-quoted provisions in para 1 on the subject. It is emphasized that any disregard of these instructions should be considered as a serious act of indiscipline and suitable action initiated against the erring employees.
[DP & AR OM No. 15014/3/(S)/80-Estt. (B), dated 28.10.1980]
(13) Participation by the Government Servants in the activities of Anand Marg Movement or any of its organizations
Under sub-rule (3) of Rule 5 of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964, if any question arises whether a party is a political party or any organization takes part in politics, within the meaning of this rule, the Central Government are to decide the issue. In pursuance of this rule, it is clarified that membership of or participation in the activities of the movement known as Anand Marg or any of its organizations by a Government Servant would attract the provisions of sub-rule (1) of Rule 5 of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964. Any Government Servant who is a member of or is otherwise associated with the activities of Anand Marg or any of its organizations is liable to disciplinary action.
[MHA OM No. 6/1/(S)/69-Ests.(B), dated the 8th May, 1969]
(13A) Participation in activities of Anand Marg
It is clarified that membership of or participation in the activities of the movement known as the Anand Marg or any of its organizations by a Government servant would attract the provisions of sub-rule (1) of rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964. Any Government servant, who is a member of or is otherwise, associated with the activities of Anand Marg or any of its organizations (see list in Annexure) is liable to disciplinary action.
1) VSS (Volunteer Social Service)
2) Amra Bengali
3) The progressive Federation of India
4) The Proutist Forum of India
5) Angika Samaj
6) Pragatisheel Magahi Samaj
7) Nagpuri Samaj
8) Maithili Samaj
9) Pragatisheel Bhojpuri Samaj
10) Awadhi Samaj
11) Braj Samaj
12) Bundeli Samaj
13) Garhwali Samaj
14) Kumaoni Samaj
15) Pragatisheel Haryana Samaj
16) Asi Punjabi
17) Proutist League
18) Education, Relief & Welfare Section
19) Seva Dharma Mission
20) Anand Marg Universal Relief Team
21) Women’s Welfare Department
22) Girl Volunteers
23) Spiritual Sports & Adventurers Club
24) Proutist Block of India
25) Proutist Universal
26) Universal Proutist Labour Federation
27) Universal Proutist Youth Federation
28) Universal Proutist Student Federation
29) Universal proutist Intellectual Federation
30) Universal Proutist Farmers Federation
31) Renaissance Artists & Writers Association
32) Renaissance Universal
33) Ek Manav Samaj
34) Bhojpuri Samaj
35) Chhatisgarh Samaj
36) Malwi Samaj
37) Vidarbha Samaj
38) Telangana Samaj
39) Circar Samaj
40) Utkar Samaj
41) Kosal Samaj
42) Navya Malayalam Samaj
43) Konkani Samaj
44) Kannad Samaj
45) Tulu Samaj
46) Dogri Samaj
47) Haryanvi Samaj
48) Pahari Samaj
49) Haroti Samaj
50) Sahyadri Samaj
51) Gujar Samaj (This does not refer to Gujar Samaj formed either in Rajasthan or Haryana)
52) Coorgi Samaj
53) Tamil Samaj
54) Rayalaseema Samaj
55) Assam Unnayan Samaj
56) Mewari Samaj
57) Marwari Samaj
58) Kathiawari Samaj
[DP&AR OM No. 15014/6/(S)/80-Estt.(B), dated 31.12.1980, OM No. 15014/6(S)/80-Estt.(B), dated 05.08.1981 & OM No. 15014/6/(S)/80-Estt. (B), dated 18.05.1983]
(14) Political neutrality of Government servants
The Government have reviewed recently the policy in regard to the social, cultural and similar other organizations whose activities may have political aspect. There have been instructions that the activities of certain organizations should be regarded as political in character. While such instruction are in force, a civil servant would be liable to disciplinary action, if he were to associate himself with any organization mentioned in such instructions. But there are several other organizations in regard to which such instructions have not been issued for purposes of rule 5 of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964. It is essential that Government servants should not only maintain political neutrality but should also appear to do so and they should not participate in the activities of, or associate themselves with any organization in respect of which there is the slightest reason to think that the organization has political aspect.
[MHA OM No. 6/6/69-Ests.(B), dated 18.07.1969]
(15) Position of Government servants in relation to elections.
Extracts are enclosed from the Election Commission’s letter No. 62/71, dated the 13th January, 1971 to Chief Secretaries of all States/Union Territories, indicating the principles which should guide the conduct of Government servants in relation to the coming General Elections. These principles should be scrupulously followed by central Government servants. In this connection, attention is also invited to Rule 5 of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964, which inter alia prohibits central Government servants from canvassing or otherwise interfering with, or using their influence in connection with or taking part in, an election to any legislature or local authority subject to the exercise of the right of franchise and assisting in the conduct of an election in the due performance of a duty imposed on them by or under any law for the time being in force. Attention is also invited to OM No. 6/6/69-Ests.(B), dated the 18th July, 1969 (Decision No. 17) in which the need for maintaining political neutrality by Government servants has been emphasized.
Extract from the Election Commission of India letter No. 62/71 dated the 13th January, 1971 to Chief Secretaries of All States/Union Territories.
Subject: - Guidelines for the Conduct of Government Servants in relation to elections
Attention is invited to sections 129 and 134 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, relating to the conduct of Government servants during elections and to recall that the Government of India and the State Governments had, prior to the last general elections/mid-term elections, issued instructions regarding the conduct of Government servants in relation to those elections. These instructions stressed that all Government employees should maintain an attitude of strict impartiality.
In fact, they were asked not only to be impartial but it was considered important that they should also appear to be impartial in relation to the elections. In short, they were required so to conduct themselves as to inspire confidence in the public in regard to their impartiality so that there might not be any occasion for the people to think that the elections were not going to be held in a free, fair and pure atmosphere. To do so, they were enjoined to avoid giving room for any suspicion that they were favouring any party or any candidate. The other points stressed in these instructions were that a Government servant should take no part in any election campaign or canvassing and that he should take scrupulous care not to lend his name, official position or authority to assist one group as against any other.
* * * *
It was further emphasized that any disregard of instructions would be considered by the Government as a serious act of indiscipline and that in case of doubt a Government servant should not hesitate to consult his superior officer.
It may be added that the points summarized above are only illustrative and not exhaustive.
The Commission considers it important that their (Government servants) attention should be specifically drawn to the provision which has been made in the Representation of the People Act, 1951 reading as follows:-
“134A. Penalty for Government servants for acting as election agent, polling agent or counting agent:- If any person in the service of the Government acts as an election agent or a polling agent or a counting agent of candidate at an election, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months, or with fine or with both.”
The Commission has received complaints from various parts of the country that Government employees, especially those appointed for election purposes, such as returning officers, assistant returning officers, presiding and polling officers are not always as impartial as they ought to be. It has been complained that these officers some times show particular favour to candidates of political parties of their choice even at the time of the actual poll and the counting of votes. Some High Courts also have, in some cases, commented severely on the conduct of some officers appointed on election duty. While the Commission is sure that the number of such officers cannot be large, the Commission would take the opportunity to make an appeal to all Government employees, especially to election officers, to be and also appear to be absolutely impartial, independent and neutral, in the performance of their election duties, whether at the time of acceptance or scrutiny of nomination papers, or at the time of polling in the polling stations, or at the time of counting of votes at the counting places.
[OM No. 25/2/71-Ests.(A), dated 23.01.1971 issued by Deptt. of Personnel]
(16) With reference to decision No. 2 a question was raised as to whether participation by a Government servant in a public meeting or demonstration organized by a political party would amount to participation in political movement or activity within the meaning of rule 5 (1).
It is felt that in the light of the existing provisions of the Conduct Rules and the instructions already issued on the subject, taking any active part by a Government servant in a meeting or demonstration organized by a political party might cause an impression which may well be construed as assisting to a political movement. For example, if a Government servant takes active or prominent part in organizing or conducting such a meeting or demonstration or speaks himself therein, or attends regularly or even frequently any such meetings etc., such action on his part is likely to create an impression that he is taking part in or assisting a political movement or activity. In order, therefore, to avoid any doubts about their political neutrality, it would be in the interest of the Government servants themselves not to participate in such meetings or demonstrations.
[Cabinet Sectt. (Deptt. Of Personnel and Adm. Reforms) OM No. 25/4/73-Estt. (A), dated 17.02.1973]
(17) Attention of the Ministries/Departments is invited to the Gazette Notification dated the 3rd and 4th July, 1975 (not reproduced) wherein certain organizations including the R.S.S., Jamaat-e-Islami, Anand Marg and CPI (ML) have been banned under the provisions of rule 33 of the Defence and Internal Security of India Rules, 1971. This rule, inter alia, provided that no person shall:-
(a) Manage or assist in managing any organization to which the rule applies;
(b) Promote or assist in promoting a meeting or any member of such an organization, or attend any such meeting in any capacity;
(c) publish any notice or advertisement relating to any such meeting; and
(d) invite persons to support such an organization or otherwise in any way assist the operations of such an organization.
Any person who contravenes any of the provisions of the above rule, shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to seven years, or with fine or with both.
2. There is reason to believe, that certain Central Government servants who had earlier been participating in the activities of the Organisations mentioned above, have continued their active association with them, even after they have been banned. It may be recalled that even before the ban orders were issued, there were instructions to the effect that participation of Government servants in the activities of the R.S.S. and Jamaat-e-Islami would attract the provisions of Clause (1) of Rule 5 of CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964, which relates to prohibition of Government servants from taking part in political activities (decision No. 12). In spite of these instructions cases had come to notice in the past of some Government servants who had been associating themselves with the activities of these organizations. Now that ban has been imposed on all these organization, it is incumbent on all the Ministries/Departments of the Central Government to take due note of such activities of their employees. Such employees who are found to have connection with the banned organizations are liable to be dealt with suitably in departmental proceedings. In appropriate cases action could also be considered against them under proviso (c) of Clause (2) of Article 311 of the Constitution.
[MHA Department of Personnel & A.R. No. 18011/1/(S)/75-Ests.(B), dated the 28th November, 1975]
(18) Participation by Government servant in banned organization – clarification
Please refer to this Department’s Office Memorandum No. 18011/1/(S)/75-Ests.(B) dated the 28th November, 1975, (decision No. 15). Consequent upon the lifting of the ban on organizations such as R.S.S. Jamaat-e-Islami, Anand Marg and CP (ML) etc. the November, 1975 OM referred to above relating to the aforesaid organizations may be treated as deleted. Hereafter, action may be taken against Central Government employees if they come to notice for participation in the activities of the political organizations, under the normal service rules, such as rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964, or corresponding rules governing the service conditions of other categories of the employees.
[MHA Department of Personnel & A.R., OM No. 34013/4/(S)/77-Estt. (B), dated the 23rd April, 1977]
(19) Participation in holding rallies for political parties by arranging for crowds and transport
Instances have come to the notice of the Government in which public servants and public utility facilities were used for arranging crowds for rallies and for arranging transport for bringing those crowds involving violations of laws and rules in regard to the use of such transport. In this connection, attention is invited to rule 5 (1) of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964 which provides that no Government servant shall be a member of, or be otherwise associated with any political party or organization which takes part in politics; nor shall he take part in, subscribe in aid of, or assist in any other manner, any political movement or activity. It is also clarified in this Department OM No. 25/4/73-Estt. (A), dated 17.02.1973 (Decision No. 19) that it is advisable for a Government employee not to attend even public meetings or demonstrations organized by a political party or having political aspects. It will not suffice to say that such arrangements were made on the orders of superior officers, as the Explanation below sub-rule (2) of rule 3 of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964 clarifies that nothing in Clause (ii) of the aforesaid sub-rule (2) shall be construed as empowering a Government employee to evade his own responsibilities. It hardly need to be emphasized that Government servants should not only maintain political neutrality but should also appear to do so. Taking active part in holding rallies in support of any political party by arranging for crowds and arranging transport for brining those crowds would, therefore, clearly attract the provisions of the aforesaid rule of the Conduct Rules. Government employees should, therefore, desist from engaging in such activities which may be construed as participation in the activities of a political party.
[MHA, Department of Personnel & A.R. OM No. 28034/5/78-Estt.(A), dated 1st September, 1978]
(20) Participation by Government servants in the activities of Dharma Pracharak Sansthan
As certain doubts have been raised about Government’s policy with respect to the membership of and participation in the activities of the Dharma Parcharak Sanstha of Shri Jai Gurudev and Door Darshi Party or their branches or affiliated bodies thereof by Government servants, it is clarified that Government have held the activities of these two organizations to be of such a nature that participation in them by Government servants would attract the provisions of sub-rule (1) of Rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964. Any Government servant, who is a member of or is otherwise associated with the aforesaid organizations or with their activities is liable to disciplinary action.
[DP & AR OM No. 15014/1/81-Estt. (B) dated the 3rd March, 1981]
(21) Association of Central Government servants with socio-religious bodies
Instances have been brought to the notice of this Department where Government servants seek prior permission for becoming members of socio-religious bodies, the objectives of which are claimed to be aimed at social reforms and religious awakening etc.
2. According to Rule 15 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964, no previous sanction of the Government is required for a Central Government servant to undertake honorary work of a social or charitable nature but he should discontinue taking part in such activities, if so directed by the Government. Prior permission is essential only if the Government servant seeks to hold an elective office. As regards participation in purely religious activities, the freedom to profess and practice any religion is guaranteed under the Constitution of India itself. Since, however, the Constitution of India is based on the principle of secular state, the Government servants, while they are free to profess and practice any religion in their private lives, should so conduct themselves in public as to leave no room for any impression to arise that they do not subscribe to the secular philosophy of the State.
3. Some of the organizations and movements claiming to aim at social and religious reforms may have some attributes of sectarian or communal nature. It will, therefore, be desirable on the part of the Government servants to be very cautious in associating themselves with any organization or movement the activities of which are liable to be construed as sectarian or communal in nature. It is not possible to give an exhaustive list of such activities or of the organizations and movements whose aims and objectives may be objectionable. The responsibility for the consequences of the decision to join any organization and participating in its activities will rest with the employee himself. It is, therefore, the duty of the Government employee who wishes to join any organization or association to satisfy himself that its activities and objectives are not of such a nature as are likely to attract action under any of the provisions of the Conduct Rules. In the circumstances, any plea of ignorance or mis-conception as to the Government’s attitude regarding participation in the activities of such organizations would not be tenable.
[Deptt. Of Pers. & Trg. O.M. No. 11013/5/88-Estt. (A) dated 11.07.1988]