Bangalore: In a change of track, India could allow serving Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers to appear as candidates to head the port tariff regulatory body that sets prices for services provided at 11 of the 12 Union government-owned ports in the country, a top shipping ministry official said.
The Tariff Authority for Major Ports, or TAMP, currently does not have a full-time chairman. Brahm Dutt, secretary, department of road transport and highways, is holding charge as an interim arrangement after the earlier chairman, A.L. Bongirwar, completed a five-year term on 17 October 2007.
Increasing options: Mumbai port. The appointments committee will now also consider IAS officers for the top tariff regulatory post. Ashesh Shah / Mint
“This arrangement will continue till 30 June,” the official said on condition of anonymity. The chairman of TAMP is appointed for five years with an age limit of 65 years.
Earlier, the appointments committee of cabinet (ACC) had said that IAS officers working in a particular ministry would not be considered to head a regulatory body related to that ministry. As a result, the candidature of former shipping secretary A.K. Mohapatra and former chairperson of Mumbai Port, Rani Jadhav, were not considered.
ACC, which clears all top government postings, has now asked the shipping ministry to prepare a fresh list of candidates for the post, including serving IAS officers, the official said.
If a serving IAS officer is selected by ACC to head TAMP, the bureaucrat will have to quit the service to take up the new role, the official added.
The latest ACC directive came after it rejected the name of Santish Nautiyal, a retired IAS officer, to head TAMP.
The 12 ports together handled 530 million tonnes of cargo in the year to March, accounting for some 70% of the cargo handled at all the ports in the country.