Kozhikode: The Kerala government has no clue about the total number of employees who draw salaries from the state exchequer. The government does not even have an accurate count of the number of permanent government employees who have been appointed by the Public Service Commission.
This came to light when, in response to an enquiry on the total count of all employees under the state government, including permanent employees, the Personnel and Administrative Reforms Department (PARD) replied that those details have not been recorded or maintained.
Job candidates had used the right to information (RTI) to seek details of the total number of permanent employees in the state and also of permanent, temporary, casual, ad hoc, daily pay, contract, part-time, contingent and sub-contract employees in each department.
In reply, the Personnel and Administrative Reforms Department said there are no definite answers to any of these questions and advised the applicants to not ask such long and complicated questions.
Section 4 of the RTI Act stipulates that the number of approved/authorised employees of each government department and the number of potential vacancies shall be published on the government of Kerala website or on the websites of the respective departments. But the departments never publish the details, making it difficult to codify, record and maintain the information, the PAR department said.
Meanwhile, the government has decided to take a count of the number of contract, temporary and dependent appointments made in all departments in the last nine years. It has sent a letter to each department asking them to provide the necessary details.
Candidates seeking jobs point out that backdoor appointments escape scrutiny because the government does not maintain proper information on the employees drawing salaries from the treasury.