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Messages updated during the month of  Sep 2020


Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting of SNEA will held on 17th and 18th October, 2020 (online).

Organizational matters:

1. Review of 2nd Membership Verification.

2. Strategies to implement the Non post based Time Bound Functional promotion upto AGM equivalent Grades for all wings w.e.f. 01.07.2018 and the Ongoing Restructuring process in BSNL.

3. Launching of 4G services and BSNL Revival.

4. Issued faced on Outsourcing of CFA, OFC and CSC work.

5. Reorganization of Circle/SSA bodies post VRS.

6. Other important HR issues.

7. SDE seniority list issues.

Circle Executive Committee (CEC) meeting should be convened by all the Circles before the CWC meeting and the view of the Circle to be presented to the CWC on all the above important issues. Cooption to the Circle OBs posts and CWC members (as per the present membership) to be completed before CWC.

Similarly all the SSA bodies also to be revamped where ever Conference is due or OBs taken VRS/retired. 


Fixation of Seniority of JTO cadre, consequent to Ernakulam High Court order.

Ernakulam High Court in its order dated 05.06.2018, directed BSNL to fix the inter-se seniority of JTOs based on Date of Joining (DoJ) instead of Training Centre marks as prayed by the applicants. Till that time , the inter-se seniority of JTOs were  fixed based on Rect Year and Training Centre marks, since 1963, by DoT and BSNL as per the DGP&T order of 1963. This is a time tested procedure followed by DoT and BSNL, for decades. Now, Hon HC directed for new criteria, DOJ instead of Training Centre marks which is having serious implications as it will spill over to earlier batches and Rects held during DoT period also. JTO to SDE DPCs held by BSNL and DoT earlier also may come under review if the new criterion is implemented, just like 206 seniority revision going on since 1990 for the JTO to SDE promotions took place since 1980s and DE and DGM promotions from 2000 onwards. This process is not yet completed.

The Review Petition (RP) filed by BSNL dismissed by the HC on technical ground that the RP filed by BSNL is similar to an appeal and hence it cannot be entertained.

Recognizing the long term implications, it is understood that as per the legal opinion received recently, BSNL management decided to file SLP in the Hon Supreme Court against the Hon HC order of Date of Joining and pleading for restoration of recruitment year and Training Centre Marks as per the guidelines in force. In the JTO RR 2014, the inter-se seniority criterion is defined as recruitment year and Training Centre Marks.

Meanwhile, BSNL management is in the process of circulating the provisional All India Eligibility List (AIEL) of JTOs recruited from 2000 year onwards, following Rect year criteria as proposed in 2018. BSNL is not strictly following DOJ criteria as directed by the HC. The final inter-se seniority will be subject to the Hon Supreme Court decision. The same method of preparation of AIEL was suggested by us as an interim measure and accepted by BSNL management in 2018 itself to go ahead with the JTO to SDE DPC for the remaining vacancies. BSNL filed an affidavit in December, 2018 in the Hon CAT in this regard and completed the preparatory work also. However AIGETOA and its activists not accepted that and demanded that the JTOs promoted on 15.06.2018 is to be reverted (for which they filed the contempt petition in the Hon CAT/EKM) and promotion is to be given in the ratio 1:1 between promotees of 1995 and DRs of 2001 rect years respectively. This 1:1 promotion demand is not accepted by BSNL management. 

The AIEL will be based on Rect year, to the extent of Promotees and DRs are available in a particular Rect year quota (not on 1:1 basis). JTOs recruited for a particular Rect year will be enbloc senior to the JTOs recruited for the subsequent rect years irrespective of Date of Joining. DoJ criteria will be followed limited within the same rect year, for the fixation of inter-se seniority within the same rect year. There is no change in the method of preparation of AIEL, same method proposed in 2018.  After having blocked the promotion offered by the Management in 2018, in writing as an affidavit before Hon. CAT Ernakulam, whether AIGETOA and their activists will accept it now OR object the same as done in 2018, it is to be seen.

From our side, we demanded that i) The unfilled quota for 2009-10 and 2010-11 vacancy years should be filled, w.e.f. 15.062018 notionally and ii) The All India Eligibility list should be prepared as per the norms by calling the Gradation particulars at least for all including the 2013 JTOs batch and sufficient JTOs from SC/ST category to fill up the SC/ST quota.

As far as SNEA is concerned all JTOs having completed 5 year of service in the present grade is eligible for promotion to next Grade w.e.f. 01.07.2018 as approved by the BSNL Board and any promotion less than this will be a loss to the Executives and adversely affect their future promotions.


View Corporate Office Order:
Implementation of eOffice in BSNL reg.


GS writes to CMD/BSNL:

Consolidation of Business Areas and rationalization of Work. The decision to merge the following SSAs may be reconsidered based on the justifications given.

GS letter to CMD


View Corporate Office Orders:
SDE Inter circle Transfer Order -I.     
SDE Inter circle Transfer Order -II.


Meeting with Shri. Arvind Vadnerkar, DIR(HR):

GS, President and both AGSs met DIR(HR) on 21.09.2020 and held discussions on different issues. Further it is decided to have detailed discussions next week on the various important issues as per our letter dated 18.09.2020. This week, HR wing is busy in the meeting with the Parliamentary Committee scheduled for 24.09.2020. 

GS letter to DIR(HR)


BSNL Bond for Rs 8500 Crores for 10 years:

BSNL Bond with Govt Sovereign Guarantee got good response from the market. BSNL got the entire amount of Rs 8500 Crores for a comparatively good interest rate of Rs 6.79%. Some bidders quoted higher interest rate @ 6.9%. BSNL has to pay the interest half yearly. 


View Media Reports:


View Corporate Office Orders:
AGM Transfer order reg.
SDE Inter circle transfer order reg.


BSNL floated Bonds for Rs 8500 Cr today
By closing the bid by 12.00 PM, 229 bidders quoted and BSNL got an offer for Rs 17183.10 Crores. BSNL will be finalizing the bid based on the rate of interest offered by the bidders.


Meeting with Shri Vivek Banzal, DIR(CFA) on 18.09.2020:

GS, President and AGSs met Shri Vivek Banzal, DIR(CFA) and held discussions on Restructuring, consolidation of SSAs into BAs and consequent post reduction:

We explained the adverse impact on merging small SSAs and creating BAs, thereby surrendering DGM/AGM level posts and creating GM level posts. This will adversely affect the promotion avenues of the Executives, we explained. More DGM/AGM level posts are to be created in BAs, based on the Revenue in the SSAs under Cat 1, 2 & 3 BAs, we demanded. In fact GM level Officers are not available in BSNL but there are sufficient number of Executives eligible to become AGM and DGM, without incurring any additional expenditure.

DIR(CFA) agreed to consider the matter. However DIR surprised to note that none of the CGM has taken up this serious issue with BSNLCO. So far, the proposal come from the CGMs are related to rearrangement of BAs.

All Circle Secretaries may take up this important matter urgently with respective CGMs by demanding DGM/AGM/CAO level posts based on assets also.  Pl refer CHQ letter to CMD dated 14.09.2020 in this regard. 


GS writes to Shri P K Purwar, CMD/BSNL
Policy on External plant maintenance– the amendment made in favour of the vendor to be modified, allowing incentive evenif MTTR as per SLA is not met – reminder to CMD.
In the amendment, calculation sheet modified as: Monthly Incentive for high FMC working Numbers instead of Monthly Incentive for MTTR adherence for higher FMC customers

Now vendor is eligible for incentive even if the MTTR as per SLA is not met in addition to the normal rate applicable. This amendment is only to favour the vendors and BSNL has to spend lakhs of rupees as incentive without meeting the MTTR.
GS letter to CMD


View Corporate Office Orders:
Discrepancies found in SAP / ERP data of the employees and its correction there off.
Promotion posting of JAO to the grade of AO on regular basis reg.
DO from DIR (HR) for settlement of pending issues in respect of retired employees under BSNL VRS-2019.
Pending pension cases in respect of retirees under BSNL VRS-2019 reg.   View List


Meeting with Shri S K Gupta, DIR(Fin) on 16.09.2020:

GS and AGSs met Shri S K Gupta, DIR(Fin) and held discussions on various points:

Restructuring, consolidation of SSAs into BAs and post reduction: We expressed our serious concern for merging small SSAs and creating BAs, thereby surrendering DGM/AGM level posts and creating GM level posts. This will have adverse impact on the promotion avenues of the Executives, we explained. In fact GM level Officers are not available in BSNL but there are sufficient number of Executives eligible to become AGM and DGM, without incurring any additional expenditure. DGM/AGM level posts to be created in BAs, based on the Revenue in the SSAs under Cat 1, 2 & 3 BAs, we demanded.

Similarly DGM(Accs & Budg) required in Cat 2 BAs instead of CAO.

The management proposal for making AGM and DGM posts interchangeable is feasible only when the promotion from AGM to DGM is on Time Bound (when promotion to DGM is not post based). DIR(Fin) agreed to our view points and assured to discuss with CMD and DR(HR) in this regard.

Payment of dues: The Pension Contribution not paid to DoT for one year and about 1100 Crores is outstanding. Society, medical payment to retirees from April 2019 etc are also pending. This month, bank loan quarterly repayment of Rs 1100 Crores is to be done. In December month, the instalment is about 2700 Crores. This week, the GST payment of more than 200 Crores will be made. On salary payment, DIR(Fin) informed that it is expected in next week.



The Case filed by Sanchar Nigam Pensioners Welfare Association (SNPWA), AIRBEWA & Others jointly for Pension/minimum pension Revision for the pre-2017 BSNL Pensioners in the PCAT, New Delhi is came for admission today. Hon PCAT admitted the petition and issued notice to DoT, DoP & PW.

i) The prayer is for Pension Revision w.e.f. 01.01.2017 for the pre-2017 Pensioners on the IDA Pension as on 31.12.2016 for the BSNL combined Service Pensioners as per the Govt Scheme of Pension assured at the time of absorption, as per the provisions of Rule 37A and as per the Pension Revision given for the counterpart Central Govt employees as per 7th CPC.

ii) It is proposed that the anomaly between pre-2017 Pensioners and the post-2017 Pensioners (serving employees after 01.01.2017) can be removed by giving notional Pay Revision w.e.f. 01.01.2017.

iii) Affordability clause cannot be a ground for denial of pension revision to the Applicants whose pension is to be paid by the Government as no affordability clause is applicable for them.

iv) The pensioners have no role in the financial status of the Company since they do not and cannot contribute to the financial growth/ decline of the Company.

Sr Advocate Shri Rajsekahr Rao appeared for SNPWA. Next date of hearing is 03.11.2020.


GS writes to GM(Pers):

Correction in JTO Recruitment year and subsequent consequential benefit of on SDE promotion and revision in the SDE Seniority list – cases of 3 JTOs belongs to A&N Circle.

Correction in SDE Seniority list 8– cases of Shri Tilak Raj Thakur, SDE, HP.

GS letter to GM(Pers) on correction in JTO rect year-- A&N Circle caseGS letter to GM(Pers) on SDE seniority correction


Meeting with Shri Jagdish Prasad, GM &CLO(SCT) on 15.09.2020

GS, President and AGS met CLO and held discussions on filling the unfilled SC/ST vacancies in SDE cadre for the vacancy years, 2009-10 and 2010-11 for which DPC held was in June, 2018. They are eligible for promotion notionally from 15.06.2018 itself as others got the promotion on 15.06.2018. The SC/ST quota could not fill up as JTOs from 2001 rect onwards are to be considered for promotion but the method of fixation of inter-se seniority was quashed by EKM HC and ordered for fixation of seniority as per DOJ. In ST category, 216 vacancies out of 220 vacancies as per 7.5% quota remain unfilled as on 15.06.2018.

CLO assured that the matter will be taken up with Pers section as per the information furnished by SNEA in the letter dated 11.09.2020 to promote the JTOs belong to the SC/ST category for the unfilled vacancies of 2009-10 and 2010-11, notionally w.e.f. 15.06.2018.

It has come to our notice that this matter was not taken up by the SC/ST Welfare Association, SEWA BSNL so far with management to fill up 15% SC and 7.5% ST quota.

GS letter to DIR(HR) dated 11.09.2020 in this regard


View Corporate Office Orders:
Tenure transfer of SDE (Telecom) - reg
Inter circle / Tenure Transfer in Telecom Stream -reg


GS writes to Shri P K Purwar, CMD/BSNL

Extending E1+5 increments to post 2010 Recruited JTO/JAOs as an interim measure to address the huge pay loss of thousands of JTO/JAOs recruited from 2010 onwards in the provisional Pay Scale of E1.

GS letter to CMD


View Corporate Office Orders:


GS writes to Shri P K Purwar, CMD/BSNL

i) Immediate Promotions to different Grades through the Non post based, Time Bound Functional Promotion Policy, namely BEPPARR 2017 approved by the BSNL Board meeting held on 28.05.2018 – clarifications to the various queries raised by your goodself in the meeting held on 08.09.2020 regarding its implementation w.e.f. 01.07.2018 reg:

ii) BSNL Executives promotion cannot be depend upon the vacancies after the Restructuring and also as per the Terms and Conditions for absorption in BSNL.

iii) Promotion given in May/June, 2018 for about 7500 Executives to AO, CAO and AGM/DE Grades become provisional, leaving no headway on Reservation issue.

GS letter to CMD


CHQ OBs and CSs meeting today from 04 PM to 08 PM


View Corporate Office Orders:
Mentioning name of the officers on the note-sheets and letters reg.
DE Transfer Order reg.
Consolidated instructions on the facility of immunity from Transfer extended to Recognised Representative Association and Support Association reg.


Meeting with Shri P K Purwar, CMD/BSNL on 08.09.2020:

GS and President met CMD, BSNL and held discussions on the following issues:

4G Services: The Expert Committee submitted its report to the Govt. As reported earlier, the Committee recommended for indigenous Core equipments for 4G Technology. So, the chance for 4G services in the near future is getting diminished. We have to see how we can pressurise the Govt not to put discriminative conditions on BSNL regarding 4G services.

We discussed the congestion in 3G network in some Circles like Kerala. Due to congestion, the MNP figures are coming down. We requested CMD to consider augmentation of 3G/4G RAN utilising the additional 5 MHz spectrum (4G spectrum) and by diverting unused software licenses. Thereafter, improvement in customer addition and port-in can be analysed and if it is successful, it can be implemented in other Circles also. CMD promised us positive action to improve the network availability and easing data congestion as demanded.

On 2G licences extension, CMD informed that discussion is going on with DoT in this regard.

Immediate Promotions to different Grades through the Non post based promotion: During the discussion with CMD, indications are that other than promises, BSNL management not taking any initiative to break the deadlock. At the same time they want to complete the Restructuring at the earliest.

I. CMD is of the opinion that the Executives promotion should be such that they should reach maximum upto DGM Grade and retire within 1 or two years (DGM promotion after 57 years age and no further promotion required for them). We have to break this thinking of the present management. We strongly protested this attitude of CMD and BSNL management and demanded that BSNL Executives should get promotional avenues upto GM/CGM level. BSNL should be lead by its own Officers and not by outsiders and management should plan for that. This is possible only when the Executives get promotion as AGM/CAO Grades by the age of 40-45 so that they can move forward as Jt GM, Addl GM/GM and CGM, as per merit. Instead of that, management is trying to block the career from the first promotion itself by delaying the promotions as much possible.

In 20 years, BSNL Management could not create its own top management. There is not a single Regular DGM after 20 years! JTOs with 20 to 28 years of service are still JTOs! But on these queries CMD have no solution other than sympathy for them.

II. CMD apprehension is that Executives will become AGM/CAO in 15 years and thereafter another 15-20 years they have to work which is not good. We explained to CMD that once they become AGM/CAO in 15 years, then only they are having further promotion avenues to DGM (E5) Grade, SG JAG(E6) Grade, Jt GM(E7) Grade, Addl GM/GM(E9) Grade and CGM Grade. Today JTOs are retiring in JTO Grade, without promotion and remaining retiring as SDE/AO or AGM/CAO. Further, new Executives only become AGM/CAO in 15 years, that will happen only after 2031, after 11 years. Till that time, all promotions to AGM/CAO Grades will be with senior Executives having 20 to 30 years of service.

III. Another apprehension of CMD is following Hierarchy in BSNL: In categorical terms, we told CMD that there is no hierarchy followed in BSNL, for many years. Normally is Hierarchy is in Govt Depts, not in PSUs. Management is still holding the Govt mindset, it is to be changed.

i) There is no GM/CGM level officer of BSNL, so no Hierarchy followed.

ii) Only 161 DGM(T) working out of 1331 posts and 14 DGM(Fin) out of 402 posts. So no Hierarchy followed.

iii) Only 1400 AGM/DE working out of 5303 posts (7470 including upgraded posts) and 19 CAO working out of 1347 posts. One and half years back 7000 AGMs were working in BSNL. So no Hierarchy followed.

iv) Above all, the Consultant appointed by BSNL itself recommended for no hierarchy upto AGM Grade which is accepted by BSNL.

In nutshell, no Hierarchy followed in BSNL from JTO/JAO to SDE/AO to AGM/CAO to DGM to GM to CGM. Still BSNL is functioning as some system is in force. So management cannot stop promotion in the name of Hierarchy.

We categorically told CMD that other than promises at different level, last 14 months no promotion took place (other than 230 Adhoc DGM promotion, Adhoc is not a promotion) after his take over.

We strongly demanded that BSNL Management should change its negative attitude towards the employees and their welfare, especially on promotions and should provide promotions w.e.f. 01.07.2018 itself by implementing the new non-post based promotions.

Compensation for Covid 19 deaths and proper treatments: We explained the difficulties faced by the employees due to non availability of cashless treatment and few unfortunate deaths of BSNL employees due to Covid 19. We requested for immediate relief to them, atleast as per Govt norms and arrangement for cashless treatment. CMD was positive and assured early action on this.

Restructuring and drastic reduction in posts: We expressed our apprehension on drastic post reduction that will have adverse impact on our promotions. At the same time the AGM/DGM level posts merged and GM level posts created, when there is no GM available. We demanded that before implementation of BSNL Restructuring, BSNL has to switch over to non-post based promotions.

Amendment in EPP, postponement of EPP for 2 years: We protested the unilateral action of BSNL Management by amending the Time Bound Financial upgradation, linking with post based promotion. Post based promotions are based on DoP&T rules and already one year ban is given for next promotion in the case of declining the promotion. TB promotion is different and double punishment cannot be given for the same. We demanded that it should be withdrawn.


View Corporate Office Orders:
Re-classification of Mathura- Vrindavan Municipal Corporation as Y Class city for the purpose of HRA reg.
Transfer and postings in the grade of AO-reg.


View Media News:


GS writes to Shri P K Purwar, CMD/BSNL expressing concern on merger of SSAs into BAs and drastic post reduction which will adversely affect the promotional avenues --- Restg order dated 27.08.2020:

Drastic reduction of DGM level posts and creation of GM level posts by merging DGM posts will adversely affect the promotional avenues of the Executives and will create unnecessary financial burden on BSNL. Since the promotion upto AGM equivalent Grade is non-post based, Time Bound as per the new promotion policy and the promotion to DGM and above are post based,  reduction in the number of DGM posts will affect the promotional avenues beyond AGM/CAO/EE Grade.

GM/PGM posts are sanctioned by merging small SSAs, earlier headed by TDM/TDE (DGM/AGM). Justified DGM/AGM level posts, based on the revenue or asset are not sanctioned for the larger SSAs at BA HQs. The deputation of the ITS Officers will end in March, 2023 and the number of ITS officer in BSNL this year (2020-21) is just 293 but the number of GM/PGM posts created by restructuring is much higher.

Posts justified for Transmission Mtce and BSS is not sanctioned.

GS letter to CMD on BA consolidation


Shri Amit Gupta, veteran leader and Ex CS/JTOA, passed away. He expired on 04.09.2020 due to heart attack. We convey our heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family and pay to the Almighty God to rest the soul in Peace.

He was in the forefront of the struggle during 1984-87 for Pay Scale upgradation from 1400-2300 scale to 1640-2900 scale and 1990 struggle for Lateral Advancement scheme (time bound financial upgradtion) after 12 years.


View Corporate Office Orders:


GS writes to Shri P. K. Purwar, CMD/BSNL:

Inconsistency in management decisions complicating the HR issues and leading to unending litigations – latest one is the BSNL order regarding deferment of next Time Bound Pay Scale Upgradation under Executive Promotion Policy [EPP] for a period of two years in the case of refusal of post based promotion, in complete disregard of i) the understanding reached between the Associations and the BSNL Management while framing of EPP in 2006, ii) REA Rules 2014 and iii) BSNL Board decision dated 28.05.2018:

Time Bound Financial Upgradation upto E6 scale is provided under EPP 2007 as per the Terms and Condition for absorption in BSNL. In the said Terms and Condition for absorption, the promotion upto E6 will be Time Bound Functional promotion and post based promotions are above E6 scale, beyond SG JAG only.

Time Bound Financial Upgradation (upto E6 scale) and post based promotions are entirely different, it cannot be linked at all.

Till the notification of the 2nd MV, i.e. upto 15.06.2020, this issue was never discussed with SNEA. After the 2nd MV, whether it is discussed with the new Recognised Association, before issuing the order on 31.08.2020 is not known to us.

For a newly recruited JTO/JAO, 2 year deferment is having cumulative effect. If the first promotion to SDE/AO is declined, then his/her next 4 Time Bound Pay Scale Upgradations will be deferred by 2 years each.

Pers section once again miserably failed to study the matter and bring the facts to the notice of the BSNL Board. The Board meeting held on 28.07.2020 amended a non-existing policy provision, making mockery of Board decisions.

In view of the above submissions, it is requested to withdraw the above order Dated 31.08.2020 which is not tenable as it is in contradiction to the i) Terms & Condition for absorption, ii) Board decision dated 28.05.2018, iii) DoPT guidelines and iv)REA Rules 2014 provisions. On implementation of the BSNL Board decision dated 28.05.2018, ie. CPSU Cadre Hierarchy, automatically deterrent on refusal of promotion will come into force.

So far we are waiting for the response from AIGETOA. Their silence indicates they are accepting the order and it might have issued by taking them into confidence. It may be another achievement and gift to the Executives.

GS letter to CMD


View Corporate Office Order:


Meeting with Shri Arvind Vadnerkar, DIR(HR) on 01.09.2020:

GS, President and AGS met DIR(HR) and held discussions on the following issues:

1) Promotion in various Cadres through CPSU Cadre Hierarchy promotion:

DIR(HR) informed that the information sought by DoT is already sent to DoT for their guidance on implementation of Reservation in the approved Policy. We suggested to implement it, following the Govt policy and as an when the guidance is received, it can be implemented from the due date of 01.07.2018 itself.

2) JTO to SDE seniority issue: We enquired about the further course of action after the Ernakulam HC order dismissing the Review Petition.

DIR(HR) informed that the RP filed for restoring the Training Centre marks as criteria for deciding the JTO inter-se seniority is dismissed by the Hon HC. In the case filed by AIGETOA activists, Hon HC ordered that JTO inter-se seniority is to be fixed as per Date of Joining (DoJ) which is against the BSNL policy followed so far. In the JTO RR 2014 also, the inter-se seniority criteria is defined as Training Centre marks.

The main prayer in the petition by AIGETOA activists for 1:1 seniority between 1995 rect Deptl JTO and 2001 rect DR JTO also dismissed by the HC.

DIR(HR) informed that BSNL is filing SLP in the Hon Supreme Court shortly against the HC judgment directing DoJ criteria for inter-se seniority among the JTOs. BSNL is waiting for the judgment copy.

3) JTO to SDE left out cases of 15.06.2018 DPC:

The SC/ST quota of 15% and 7.5% did not fill up due to the dispute in JTO seniority from 2001 rects onwards. Out of 220 ST vacancies, only 04 vacancies could fill up on 15.06.2018. ST candidates of 2002 rect year was already promoted in the 2011 DPC. Some SC quota vacancy also pending. We requested management to take immediate action for the promotion for the left out vacancies of 2009-10 and 2010-11 vacancy years, notionally from 15.06.2018 itself.

Surprisingly SEWA BSNL did not taken up this issue of left out cases of 15.06.2018 promotion, mostly SC/ST so far with the management. Even the 15% (SC) and 7.5% (ST) quota is not filled up in the last JTO to SDE promotion but they are silent!

4) SDE to DE left out cases in the 29.06.2018 promotion:

The contempt petition at CAT/CDG is disposed clearing the roadblock for promotion for the left out cases. Their juniors are already promoted on 29.06.2018 and all are eligible for promotion w.e.f. 29.06.2018. DIR(HR) informed that there is some difference of opinion between different sections in BSNLCO about the promotion for the left out cases itself. So BSNL sought the legal opinion from the lawyer defended the case at Chandigarh.

Since DIR(HR) had a meeting with the CMD, other issues could not discuss today.