The Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964
RULE 7. DEMONSTRATION AND STRIKES:
Government of India Decisions
(1) Restriction on Government servants who are office-bearers of service associations, in dealing in their official capacity with matters connected with those associations.
Reference this Ministry’s Office Memorandum No. 24/23/57-Ests.(B), dated the 3rd March, 1959, (not reproduced), on the above subject and to say that a point has been raised whether after the promulgation of the Central Civil Services (Recognition of Service Associations) Rules, 1959, the convention that an officer who may be required to deal in a responsible capacity with representations from a service Association, should not be an office-bearer or a member of the Executive Committee of that Association, would continue to be observed. It has been decided that any Government servant who is an office-bearer or a member of the Executive Committee of a Service association should not himself deal in his official capacity with any representation or other matters connected with that Association.
[MHA OM No. 24/1/60-Estt. (B), dated 25.01.1960]
(2) “Strikes” – interpretation of what constitutes a strike under the conduct Rules
Rule 7 (ii) of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964, provides that no Government servant shall resort to or in any way abet any form of strike in connection with any matter pertaining to his service or the service of any other Government servant. Instances have come to the notice of Government where employees resort to various methods of protests for redress of grievances, some of which are tantamount to strike. References have been received seeking clarification whether certain acts, are covered under the definition of ‘strike’ and if so, whether action can be taken against such employees for violation of the Conduct Rules. It is, therefore, clarified that ‘strike’ means refusal to work or stoppage or slowing down of work by a group of employees acting in combination, and includes –
(i) mass absentation from work without permission (which is wrongly described as “mass casual leave”);
(ii) refusal to work overtime where such overtime work is necessary in the public interest;
(iii) resort to practices or conduct which is likely to result in, or results in the cessation or substantial retardation of work in any organization. Such practices would include, what are called ‘go-slow’, ‘sit-down’, ‘pen-down, stay-in’, sympathetic” or any other similar strike; as also absence from work for participation in a Bandh or any similar movements.
3. Government servants who resort to action of the above kind violate rule 7 (ii) of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964 and disciplinary action can be taken against them. It may be noted that the list of activities which are covered under the definition of strike as enumerated above is only illustrative and not exhaustive. It only clarifies the position in respect of practices which are often resorted to at present.
[MHA OM No. 25/23/66-Ests.(A), dated 09.12.1966]
(3) Participation in “GHERAO” by Central Government servants -
Instances have come to the notice of Government in which employees of certain Central Government offices staged which is called “Gherao”, involving forcible confinement of public servants within office premises by surrounding their places of duty and have held demonstrations/meetings both within office premises during office hours and also outside the office premises beyond office hours, tending to forcible confinement of public servants within office premises. Such demonstrations/activities are prejudicial to pubic order and also involve criminal offences like wrongful restraint, wrongful confinement, criminal trespass or incitement to commit offences. They are also subversive of discipline and harmful to the public interest and participation in them by Government servants and would constitute good and sufficient reason within the meaning of Rule 11 of the Central Civil Services (Classification, Control and Appeal) Rules, 1965. It has, therefore, been decided that a serious view should be taken of such acts of lawlessness and insubordination on the part of public servants. The Central Government Departments are advised to take action on the following lines in such cases:-
(i) Disciplinary action should be taken against the prominent participants in the ‘Gherao’ for contravention of Rules 3 and 7 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964. In the charge-sheet to be served in pursuance of such disciplinary action, it should be specified to the extent that the facts justify, that demonstrations prejudicial to public order and involving criminal offences, namely, wrongful restraint, wrongful confinement, criminal trespass and incitement to such offences, have been held; that such conduct was subversive of discipline and harmful to the public interest; and that the conduct was wholly unbecoming of a Government servant.
(ii) Absence from work on account of participation in ‘Gherao’, should in all cases be treated as unauthorized absence involving break in service. The absence should not be regularized as leave of any kind.
(iii) Whenever there is a case of ‘Gherao’, wrongful restraint, wrongful confinement or criminal trespass or of any other cognizable offence, a written report should be made to the Officer-in-charge of the Police Station having jurisdiction, requesting him to register the offence and to take action under the law. The names of the offenders should be included in the written report. Copies of the report should be endorsed to the Police Commissioner/Superintendent of Police and the Home Secretary to the State Government concerned for necessary action according to law.
(iv) If, notwithstanding the mandatory provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code, Police takes no action on such a report, action should be taken promptly to file a complaint before the appropriate Magistrate in respect of the substantive offences under the Indian Penal Code or other law. In certain circumstances a petition could be filed before the High Court for issue of the appropriate writ, but this should be done after taking legal advice.
[OM No. 25/S.11/67-Ests.(A), dated the 13th April, 1967]
(3A) While taking action to file a complaint before the appropriate Magistrate, the assistance of the Officer of the Central Bureau of Investigation if any, available locally, may also be taken in drafting the complaints and deciding the manner, in which evidence should be collected and produced.
[M.H.A. OM No. 25/S.11/67-Estt. (A), dated the 15th April, 1967]
(4) Display of posters and other notices –
Please See Government of India Decision No. (10) under Rule 3.
(5) Demonstrations in the vicinity/neighbourhood of Government offices
It has been noticed that when some demonstrations organized by political parties were held in or passed through the vicinity of Government offices, the Government employees working in these offices came out to witness the demonstration. In this process the Government employees sometimes got mixed up with the demonstrators and it became difficult to segregate the demonstrators from the Government employee. In order to avoid such situations in future, the Ministry of Finance etc., are requested to impress upon the employees working under them that it is desirable on such occasions that they stay inside their offices and keep away from the demonstrators or the crowd near the place of demonstration.
[D.P. & A.R. No. 25/6/73-Ests.(A), dated 09.03.1973]