|18 officers in service sans verification|
The verification is conducted by the office of Commissioner of Customs (General) based in Mumbai at New Customs House, Ballard Estate, as the commissioner is the cadre-controlling authority in Mumbai.
Commissioner of Customs (General) N Sasidharan, when asked about the officers not having been verified, said: ‘‘Verfication of ex-servicemen’s certificates is a lengthy process. We keep reminding the concerned agencies.’’
As per information obtained through Right to Information (RTI) Act, nine ex-servicemen have been employed in the Customs Department as Preventive Officers since 1990—they are responsible for collecting information, conducting raids and seizures—and nine ex-servicemen joined in as examiners—they are responsible for examining goods that come in and leave the country through the customs’ channel.
The 18 officials were employed in the Customs Department through examinations conducted by the Staff Selection Commission. Interestingly, it was only after the RTI application was filed that the Customs Department woke up to the fact that it had never verified the certificates submitted by the ex-servicemen.
As on June 5, the Customs Department had verified the certificates of two preventive officers and one examiner. The rest are now in the process of being verified. Meanwhile, the Preventive Officers have been promoted to the rank of Superintendent of Customs while the Examiners’ current status is that of Appraising Officers.