New Delhi: Government has relaxed the 50 per cent norm for overstaying abroad after official visit, by allowing bureaucrats to avail a four-day holiday if their official tour is of less than 8 days.
Under the earlier norms, bureaucrats travelling abroad on official tour could seek leave for staying abroad up to 50 per cent of the duration of visit, subject to a maximum of 15 days.
It has been decided that in case of official visit/tour abroad (including training and excluding study leave) where the period of deputation is less than 8 days, the government official may be granted ex-India leave for a maximum period of 4 days, said the office memorandum issued by the Department of Expenditure in the Finance Ministry.
The memorandum, however, clarified that in respect of official visit/tour abroad, including training for more than 8 days, the limit of 50 per cent ex-India leave will continue.
It further said, that during ex-India leave the closed holidays, like Saturday, Sunday, etc, may be pre-fixed/ suffixed subject to the condition that no extra financial implications like payment of hotel charges/per-diem allowance are involved.
Earlier this year, the Ministry had said that bureaucrats can go on a maximum four overseas trips in a calendar year, and that Secretaries should undertake such travels only when no one else can be deputed.
Secretaries to government departments had also been barred from travelling abroad during a Parliament session unless absolutely unavoidable. Also, Secretary and the Minister of a department cannot be abroad at the same time.
The foreign travels of bureaucrats have to be authorised by Screening Committee of Secretaries (SCoS).