This article is written Team LawSikho.
After you drive 50 km out from any major town or city in India, you find yourself in the real India, so to speak.
I was recently talking to a lawyer who was working in Gurgaon but belonged to a small town. He made me understand that getting a law firm job does not excite most law students who are not from big cities. Most Indian law students and Indian lawyers still only dream about getting a cushy government job.
All the generations of families believe that bagging a government job is still the most sensible thing to do. Government jobs set you up for a good life.
In their books, nothing is comparable to a government job, with which comes prestige, power, position and job security.
Especially given the cold and deep recession we are facing, which will lead to a massive loss of jobs in the private sector, government jobs definitely look very lucrative at the moment.
Still, the new generation does not always find government jobs palatable.
Where will I get posted? Will I have to spend the rest of my life in godforsaken district cities with no amenities?
Will I be ordered around by crooked and corrupt politicians?
Will I have any autonomy? Will I get to make a real impact?
What perks will come with my job? Will my salary be far lower than friends in the private sector working in big law firms or building their own practices?
For jobs like judiciary and UPSC, many of these questions are very valid and cause many to shy away from government jobs.
However, there is one option that’s quite different. It comes with all the government job perks, and a few of the problems.
You get to live in a big city. Most probably Mumbai.
You get paid a lot of money from year 1.
You can even leave anytime you like and find lucrative jobs in big law firms.
You enjoy relative autonomy and get to work with a very professional, highly efficient organization known for its political impartiality.
You could get an official residence in Mumbai. Which is a big deal if you know something about the city.
Basically this is one of the best possible government jobs for lawyers. The highest-paid one as well.
I am talking about the position of a SEBI Grade A officer. Here are all the details on the SEBI website.
SEBI Grade A officer is an assistant manager legal post at the Securities Exchange Board of India (“SEBI”) which derives its powers, functions and role from the SEBI Act, 1992. SEBI is the only regulatory body of the securities markets in India.
On successful selection, the SEBI Grade A officer is under probation for 2 years from the time of his/her joining. On the successful completion of this period, the officer is made a permanent officer of the SEBI.
To understand the life of a SEBI officer, let’s first talk about salaries. The salary of a grade A officer is about INR 1,07,000 per month, which is without taking accommodation. With accommodation, it is about INR 73,000.
There are different streams for which an A Grade officer is selected. The functions and duties of the post would be told to you after your joining and in training.
Furthermore, the work profile includes approval of the stock exchange’s bylaws; the amendment to these bylaws; inspection of accounts of various stock exchanges; identify and inspect various malpractices in the securities markets; taking steps to increase awareness about the securities markets in the investor community; granting and withdrawing recognition of stock exchanges.
The work culture is what makes the job so attractive. It is a strict 9 to 5 job unlike law firm or private jobs which are known for being super stressful. There is no bond that you have to sign under the course of your employment.
After getting selected, you could be posted at any of the regional offices of SEBI which are located throughout the country. SEBI offices are located in major cities in India, which include New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Ahmedabad. Most people are of course in Mumbai.
There is also the added advantage of learning a lot about the securities markets on the job.
Regarding the career enhancement options, a Grade A officer who wants to get promoted to a Grade B officer needs to apply for the promotion test and then appear for the examination as well.
When it comes to the day to day life of a Grade A officer of the SEBI, this quora thread gives quite some inside scoop. The punch time can range from 8:45 am to 11 am and you have to put in your 8 hours every day. Even the overtime is compensated adequately.
The work of an officer is mostly drafting related. You will be expected to work on reports regarding various inspections, work on policy-related documents or reports. The quality of work depends on the kind of department that you’re allotted to. Further, SEBI even helps you out in obtaining degrees like CFA and FRM with reduced examination fees and reimbursement if you manage to clear them.
The quora thread also goes on to tell us that sports-related activities are also promoted in the SEBI. Further, your boss can make you help meet and network with very relevant people.
Oh, I also forgot to mention the most attractive part of a Sarkari job, the benefits that come with the SEBI job, apart from the salary, are leave fare concession, eye refraction, financial dailies, book grant, briefcase, conveyance expenses, house cleaning allowance, medical expenses, staff furnishing scheme, scheme for purchasing computers, education allowance, subsidised lunch facility.
The hierarchy for an officer in SEBI is given as below:
WHOLE TIME MEMBERS
CHIEF GENERAL MANAGER (GRADE F)
General Manager (Grade E)
Deputy General Manager (Grade D)
Assistant General Manager (Grade C)
Manager (Grade B)
Assistant Manager (Grade A)
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