QUOTA INTERVENTION IN CIVIL SERVICE: A CRITICAL REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATIONS
National The Quota system in the Civil Service originated during the British
period. In independent Bangladesh, quota intervention in recruitment of Civil
Service was implemented on 5 September 1972. At present in recruitment to the
Civil Service, 55 percent posts have been reserved for quota, only 45 percent posts
are allocated on the basis of merit. Cadre-wise, the Quota system is followed in
promotion, starting from the position of deputy secretary and above, up to
additional secretary. This policy goes against the principles of equality and nondiscrimination
envisaged in article 29(1) and 29(2) of the Constitution of the
People's Republic of Bangladesh. It has infact, created serious impediments to
merit based Civil Service promotion. Of course, article 29(3) (a) empowers the
state to set aside positions for making special provisions for backward section of
citizens in recruitment to the public service. Unfortunately, the spirit of this article
has been ignored in meeting the Quota provision for recruitment in public posts. To
ensure efficiency, effectiveness and dynamism in the Civil Service, and above all, to
achieve a merit based Civil Service, the use of Quotas at the entry level needs to be
revalued and reasonable accommodation made for merit, setting aside 75 percent
of the positions at the lowest for this purpose. As well, Quota at the Senior
Promotion level should be totally dropped and the Senior Service Pool should be
reintroduced. All Civil Service Reform Commissions/ Committees formed so far,
including the Bangladesh Public Service Commission, have prescribed for reforms
in the Civil Service in this direction. In this paper, by way of critical examination, a
rational solution has been sought to reshape and replace, the existing Quota
systems for a merit-based Civil Service.
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