It’s never easy in Uttar Pradesh, despite the regime change. In fact, instances of IAS and IPS officers having altercations with politicians have increased since the BJP government came to power in the state. This might be one of the few things the Yogi Adityanath administration has in common with his predecessor Akhilesh Yadav. The latest episode involved IPS officer Charu Nigam who was rebuked by a BJP legislator. Earlier too there were instances involving IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagpal, and other senior babus like Amitabh Thakur and Love Kumar (IPS). Sources say that more than 13 IPS officers have already started lobbying at the Centre for a change of cadre.
And then there are the mass transfers which contribute to the uncertainty being felt in UP’s babu circles and their increasing frustration. Since coming to power, the BJP-led state government has transferred nearly 400 IAS and IPS officers in six separate exercises. The most recent is the transfer of 40 IAS officers. Adityanath has also, finally, appointed Rajiv Kumar, a 1981-batch IAS officer, as the state’s new chief secretary, replacing Rahul Bhatnagar. Last month, the government had transferred 74 IAS officers and 67 IPS officers.
Corrupt babus, beware!
The Centre’s campaign against corruption in government is well underway with as many as 39 IAS officers being probed for their alleged involvement in corruption and other irregularities. The investigations are being conducted by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), which is the nodal authority for IAS officers. Apparently 29 officers from the Central Secretariat Service are also facing disciplinary proceedings. The Centre is also conducting a comprehensive review of its staff as part of the efforts to further improve the service delivery and governance system.
According to norms, a government employee’s performance is reviewed twice during service — 15 years after qualifying for the service and then after 25 years — to remove deadwood from the system. In the last one year, the Centre has given compulsory retirement to 129 non-performing employees, including IAS and IPS officers. It has also undertaken an exercise to review the service records of about 67,000 employees. Nearly 25,000 of these are from Group A services, including the IAS, IPS and IRS.
A messy transfer in Manipur
Manipur chief secretary Oinam Nabakishore has resigned after being transferred as director general of the Officers Training Academy. Another IAS officer R. R. Rashmi was appointed the new chief secretary. Mr Nabakishore, an IAS officer of the 1984 batch was appointed the chief secretary on September 30, 2015. Citing “personal reasons”, Mr Nabakishore said that he was taking voluntary retirement effective from October 9 this year. Clearly, the transfer has not gone down well with the bureaucrats split on the merits of Manipur chief minister Nongthombam Biren Singh’s rather abrupt decision to replace Mr Nabakishore.
The CM’s defenders say that Mr Rashmi being senior to Mr Nabakishore rightly deserved the position and also mention the CM’s prerogative to appoint his own chief secretary and state police chief. Mr Nabakishore’s supporters reject the “seniority” plea since there are at least two IAS officers senior to the new chief secretary in the cadre hierarchy. Many believe that Mr Nabakishore, the veteran babu, will be back in the limelight soon, perhaps in a political avatar. Sources say that he is the first chief secretary from among the Meiteis, the majority community. His transfer has evoked protests from his supporters in his hometown. Watch this space for updates.