The Personnel Ministry has issued a new set of instructions directing that a prior background check by the Intelligence Bureau is to be carried out on candidates for the top and other important posts of regulatory bodies and tribunals in the country.
Regulatory agencies include the IRDAI, Securities and Exchange Board of India and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. The tribunals include Central Administrative Tribunal, Securities Appellate Tribunal, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal and Competition Appellate Tribunal, reported Financial Express.
“Verification of character and antecedents of the short-listed candidates shall be made by the Administrative Ministry/department through the Intelligence Bureau,” the Personnel Ministry said in a circular to secretaries of all central government departments.
The selection of the chairperson and members of regulatory bodies and tribunals is done by the respective selection committees of the agencies or tribunals. The respective selection committee shall shortlist candidates (two or three times the number of vacancies) in a preliminary round.
Based on the clearances from the Bureau, the selection committee shall then recommend a slate of candidates, which shall be submitted to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) by the Administrative Ministry after obtaining the requisite approval of the concerned minister-in-charge, the Personnel Ministry said.
All the ministries concerned have been asked to follow these instructions “without deviation” in all future selection to the posts of chairperson, president, vice-president, vice-chairperson, vice-president, presiding officer, accountant member, administrative member, judicial member, expert member, law member, revenue member, technical member or members in tribunals/regulatory bodies under the purview of the ACC, it said.
Meanwhile, nine candidates are reportedly in the running to be the next IRDAI Chairman.
Besides six Life Insurance Corporation officials, the list also contains names of senior IRDAI officials, and senior executives of two government-run insurers, two people with knowledge of the matter told BloombergQuint.
The new Chairman will be named by 20 February. The position will fall vacant on 21 February when the current Chairman, Mr TS Vijayan, retires.