About the service
•The ministries of Government of India and Ministry of Railways have their own Secretariat Services known as Central Secretariat Service and Railway Board Secretariat Service respectively.
•Armed Forces Headquarters Civilian Staff is a group B service which provide secretariat assistance in the Army Headquarter.
•The officers of this service provide continuity in the functioning of the Armed Forces of India, including the Integrated Headquarters of the Ministry of Defence (Army, Navy and Air), Defence Staff Headquarters and the Inter Service Organizations under the Ministry of Defence.
•In 1942, during World War II, civilian employees under different departments and branches of the Armed Forces Headquarters responsible for providing static ancillary services were reorganized and consolidated under one head who was called the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), a post of Deputy Secretary rank.
•The Armed Forces Headquarters Civil Services was established in 1968.
•In 1987, the post of Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), was upgraded to the level of a Joint Secretary (JS), under the Defence Secretary, who is the Cadre Controlling Authority and Head of the AFHQ employees.
•A foundation course is conducted at Defense Headquarter Training Institute, New Delhi
•During the training, they are sensitized about the government functioning and provided training for their roles in Service Headquarters and Inter service organization.
Roles and Responsibilities
The officers deal with subjects such as:
Posts and Promotions
•The AFHQCS had four grades in 1968: 204 were in Group A, and 1472 in Group B.
•The highest grade was senior civil staff officer, a level analogous to deputy secretary.
•After the 4th Central Pay Commission (1986), a large number of existing posts were upgraded, which were again upgraded after the Sixth Central Pay Commission (2006).
•In 2011, the AFHQCS had 409 personnel at group A, including 4 at Joint secretary level, and 2235 at group B.
•It currently has six grades/levels, from Assistant Section Officer to Principal Director.
Designation of officers
•The officers are first appointed as Assistant Civilian Staff Officer/ Section Officer
•Section Officers are eligible for promotion to the grade of Deputy Directors on completion of 06 years service.
•In addition, up-gradation (Non-Functional Scale) to the Grade Pay of Group A officers on completion of 4 years approved service as Section Officer.
•Civilian Staff Officer/Deputy Director/Under Secretary
•Senior Civilian Staff Officer/Joint Director/Deputy Secretary
•Principal Director (SAG)
•AFHQ Civil Service has 4 posts of Principal Director.
The Service at a glance
•They play extremely important role in the national building delaing with defense forces.
•Most of the postings are available in Delhi only
•A few posts are authorised at outside location also
•The officers spend their entire career in Delhi which provides stability of tenure
•The officers can rise upto the rank of Joint Secretary Government of India
•They also enjoy some perks and facilities of defense establishment