Hyderabad: The Telangana state government ordered a reshuffle and transfer of 27 bureaucrats on Tuesday, catching many of them unawares. They had anticipated that transfers would be made prior to the 2019 general election, and didn’t see it coming this soon.
Some of the transfers have raised eyebrows as for instance that of Arvind Kumar, Resident Commissioner of Telangana Bhavan in New Delhi. He had been shunted out from the Industries department a year ago as he had questioned the state government on the power purchase agreement between the TS and Chhattisgarh governments. A leaked document had revealed that the state government was losing nearly Rs 10,000 crore on account of the public-private partnership project and this was embarrassing for the ruling party.
However, in a year’s time, he has been brought back as Principal Secretary of the important Municipal Administration and Urban Development department.
Another surprise posting is of B.R. Meena, special chief secretary, revenue, who played a vital role in unearthing the Miyapur land scam and who has been moved to the Telangana State SC/ST Commission as Secretary, a comparatively unimportant position.
Senior IAS officer, Somesh Kumar, who was Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation Commissioner and enjoyed easy access to Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao was transferred sometime ago to the Tribal Welfare department as Principal Secretary before the municipal elections. He was later sent to the Commercial Taxes department under the revenue sector. And now, he has been given full charge as Excise and Prohibition Commissioner.
Syed Omal Jaleel, Secretary in the Minorities Welfare Department has been posted as Collector of Vikarabad as he was found to be critical of the functioning of the Wakf Board, sources said.
The transfer of Suresh Chanda from special chief secretary, animal husbandry, to member- secretary, state finance commission, is a step up.
A source in the TS administration, who did not want to be named, said, “The reshuffle can be looked upon as ‘preparation’ for the coming elections. The government will place officials who will implement welfare schemes speedily and work cordially with the local legislature.”
TS Chief Secretary S.P. Singh is retiring on January 31, 2018. The state government has written to the Centre asking for his term to be extended.