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Sanction for holding of an elective office by a Government Servant

Department of Personnel & Training has issued various instructions on sanctions for holding an elective office by the Central Government employees under Rule 15 of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964. The essence of various instructions in the matter has been summarized in the following paras for guidance and better understanding: -


1.        No Government servant shall, except with the previous sanction of the Government, hold an elective office, or canvass for a candidate or candidates for an elective office, in any body, whether incorporated or not.

[Rule 15 (1) (c) of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964]


2.         The entire time of the Government servants should be available to the Government and no activities unconnected with his official duties should be allowed to interfere with the efficient discharge of his duties.  However, the question of permitting Government servants to hold elective office can be considered, subject to the Administrative Authority satisfying itself that this will not interfere in any manner with the discharge of official duties by the Government servant concerned.

 [Para 2 of OM No. 11013/11/2007-Estt.(A) dated 13.11.2007]

[Para 2 of OM No. 35014/6/92-Estt.(A) dated 10.06.1993]


3.         There were certain instances where the Government servants continued to hold elective offices in various capacities for unduly long periods. In some cases, where bye-laws of these bodies placed restrictions on the number of consecutive terms a person may hold in an office, Government servants were reported to have either got themselves re-elected after a gap or had got a family member/ close relative elected as a surrogate in order to keep control of such bodies. In such cases, Government servants were not bestowing adequate attention upon their official duties and, as a result, such Government servants also developed vested interests, particularly if the body was involved in commercial activities, directly or indirectly.

[Para 2 of OM No. 11013/1/2016-Estt.A-III dated 05.08.2019]


4.         As per the policy of the Government, a Government servant is allowed to hold elective office in any body, whether incorporated or not, for a period of two terms or for a period of 5 years, whichever is earlier. However, a prior sanction would be required when a Government servant contests an election in such a body. In cases where the Government servants have assumed charge of elected posts prior to 5th August 2019, they may be allowed to complete the full period of their current tenure, except in cases where there are charges of corruption and adverse audit paras, etc. The Competent Authority is required to keep in mind all the relevant factors while granting permission under Rule 15(1)(c) of the CCS (Conduct) Rules, 1964.

[Para 1 of the OM No. 11013/1/2016-Estt.A-III dated 27.02.2020]


 5.         Notwithstanding the above, a Government servant, may without the previous sanction of the Government,

                             i.        take part in the registration, promotion or management (not involving the holding of an elective office) of a literary, scientific or charitable society or of a club or similar organization, the aims or objects of which relate to the promotion of sports, cultural or recreational activities, registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 (21 of 1860), or any other law for the time being in force; or

                            ii.        take part in the registration, promotion or management (not involving the holding of an elective office) of a co-operative society substantially for the benefit of Government servant, registered under the Co-operative Societies Act, 1912 (2 of 1912), or any other law for the time being in force.

Provided that -

                             i.        he shall discontinue taking part in such activities if so directed by the Government; and

                            ii.        his official duties shall not suffer thereby and he shall, within a period of one month of his taking part in such activity, report to the Government giving details of the nature of his participation.

[Rule 15(2) (d) and Rule 15(2)(e) and proviso thereof of the CCS(Conduct) Rules, 1964]


6.          In case any reference to the relevant OM is required, the same may be accessed by clicking on the hyperlink or from the DOPT’s website. List of the OMs mentioned in this document is as under:


·         OM No. 35014/6/92-Estt.(A) dated 10.06.1993

·         OM No. 11013/11/2007-Estt.(A) dated 13.11.2007

·         OM No. 11013/1/2016-Estt.A-III dated 05.08.2019

·         OM No. 11013/1/2016-Estt.A-III dated 27.02.2020