Explainer: When does one become entitled to charge allowance

If we shall pursue the legal definition of charge allowance then in pursuance to the service Law pronounced by Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in different Judgements, charge allowance has been defined as service parlance which an employee gets for working against the higher post.

This legal definition of charge allowance makes it clear that till an incumbent will work against the higher post in the in charge capacity he/she will be entitled to get charge allowance. In other words till an officer is not regularized on the higher post, or until an employee placed as in charge of higher post is not reverted to his lower post, he will get charge allowance. 

The first condition which entitles an incumbent to get charge allowance is that competent authority must have specified in the placement order that the officer so placed as in-charge of higher post must be entitled to get the charge allowance as admissible under relevant rules. 

Now let us consider the method of calculating charge allowance. A plain reading of Article 87(b) of CSR volume -I makes it clear that a Government servant who is appointed incharge of a high post in his own pay and grade either in a situation covered under sub-clause (iv) of Article 85( 2) or sub clause (I) of Article 85(3) may be allowed charge allowance equal to the difference of the pay of the concerned officer in his own grade and pay which he would have got had he been formally appointed to the higher post .

The charge allowance will vary from time to time as and when there is an increase in the pay of the employee in his own grade or as and when the increment would fall due to the official in the higher grade had he been appointed to it formally from the date he was put in charge of it. The amount of pay in his own grade plus charge allowance shall not at any time exceed the amount of pay which the official would have otherwise drawn from time to time in the higher grade had he been appointed to it formally from the date on which he was appointed to be incharge of higher post or from the date he took over it’s charge in addition to his own post as per sub clause (iv) of Article 85(2).This shall be deemed to have come into force from 02-8-1985.

It is also necessary for all the drawing and disbursing officers to know that how to fix the pay of a Government servant who is placed as incharge of higher post is promoted from a lower post to higher post. The question of promotion is not decided on the basis of the designation of two posts or on the basis of the word “promotion” used in the promotion orders but it is decided on the basis of pay scale attached to the two posts. Note 2 under Article 66 of CSR volume-I lays down that the following cases are treated as the cases of promotion 🙁 I) when a the three factors i. e : minimum, maximum and rate of increment of pay scale are upgraded. (ii) when two factors are upgraded and third one remains unchanged. 

These two explanations make it clear that when only one factor is upgraded then it will not be a case of promotion. In such a case designation of an employee will change but he will not get any benefit in pay fixation. It other words his basic shall remain same as he was getting prior to his promotion. 

Example: An incumbent was working in the pay scale of 6700-200-10700 when he was promoted as Lecturer on  22-4-2003 when pay Scale of Lecturer was 6700-200-10900.Here in this case only one factor i.e: maximum has been upgraded. Thus this will not be a case of promotion. But when vide SRO :225 dated 18-8-2005 pay scales of all the teaching staff were enhanced. There after an incumbent working in the pay scale of 6700-200-10700 was promoted as Lecturers and now the pay scale of Lecturer was 8000-275-13500. In this case all the three factors were upgraded and this was a case of promotion.

This criteria of determining whether it was a case of promotion or not, was applicable up to 31-12-2005.Thereafter sixth pay commission had been implemented by the government vide SRO :93 of 2009 dated 15-4-2009 . At this stage pay scales were changed into pay band plus grade pay. Now in order to determine whether it was case of promotion or not it is necessary to examine the grade pay attached with the two posts. When grade pay of two posts would be different then it will be a case of promotion but otherwise it will not be a case of promotion. This can happen in such situation when three time bound promotions would have sanctioned in favour of an employee and grade pay of third time would be same and that of post to which an employee has been promoted. In this case grade pay of promotion post has already been covered and the concerned will not get any benefit on his promotion. 

As far method of calculation of charge allowance is concerned, it has been explained in details at page number 54 of Jai Durga Guide of Civil Services Regulation volume-I where in an example of charge allowance has been cited and method of calculation of charge allowance has been explained in details. Prior to 21-12-1988 there was a, restriction that appointment against a higher post in “own pay and grade” Could be made for six months only at a time but that restriction has since been waived vide SRO :386 dated 21-12-1988 and this fact has also been specified as Government instruction (a) below Article 85 of CSR volume-I. 

From the facts explained hereinabove, it becomes apparently clear that when an incumbent is entitled to get charge allowance, which cases shall be considered as cases of promotion ,what is the method of fixation of basic pay for calculation of charge allowance and how and why charge allowance will change from time to time. The purpose of writing this Article is to apprise all the drawing and disbursing officers about the method of calculation of charge allowance by publishing it in this esteemed Newspaper and also to apprise all the officers working in incharge capacity against higher post.

It has been observed that there were some dispute about calculation of charge allowance or about entitlement of charge allowance. Now I think that up to some extent all the concerned will get sufficient knowledge about the topic under discussion. I would like to bring it into the kind notice of my colleagues that we all the drawing and disbursing officer are under obligation to resolve all the genuine issues of all of our subbordinates in a similar manner as a head of the family resolves all the issues of his family members but this would be possible only when we would have full knowledge of pay fixation rules and amendments made in it by government from time to time and this would be possible when we shall have habit of continuous reading which will provide us opportunities of increasing our knowledge in the desired field.


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Mohd Shabir Khatana

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