Why no invite to Tamil Nadu CM's meet: IFS officer

The entire district-wise IAS and the IPS officers attended, rued a district forest officer.

Chennai: Officers attached to the Indian Forest Service serving in Tamil Nadu feel neglected as they do have direct access to the state top brass including the office of chief minister and the chief secretary. Even during the recent three-day conference of Chief minister with civil servants held at the state secretariat, after a gap of four years, the IFS fraternity was not invited. Whereas the entire district-wise IAS and the IPS officers attended, rued a district forest officer.

According to a senior IFS officer, also a member of Tamil Nadu IFS Officers Association, there is no tradition of inviting the forest officials for any statewide conferences, but think about Nilgiri and Coimbatore districts, where the role of district forest officer is more significant than a collector as the more than 40 percent of land coming in these areas are administered, conserved and patrolled by the foresters.

My officer can any day give a better picture on the red sander timber mafia and the movement of woodcutters from Tamil Nadu to Andhra, but as usual we are ignored, he rued adding that at least session with the state top brass will help them to understand our environment and forest in a better way. “It is a fact that we are a lesser-known category in the civil services and the due respect is not given when compared to that of IPS and IAS. We can reach out to the state top brass only through forest secretary, who is again an IAS officer; the senior IFS official said seeking anonymity.

“Our job is no way inferior to that of other civil services and ranges from protecting water bodies, fighting mining mafia, safeguarding the forest resource and investigating the wildlife crime in remote dense forests”, said another official.

“Our job at times is tedious and as we have to double up like an IAS and an IPS officer, but there is no due recognition for that. Recently, I was asked to meet the collector, but the collector went to attend the IAS conference in Chennai and the collector’s PA was rude to me when I asked why the collector’s schedule was not hinted to me, there was no proper reply”, the official said. “Even the conferred IAS officers heading the district as collector takes us for granted. At times takes they do not even offer a chair to the DFOs who also clear the civil services”, the official noted, wondering whether the collectors would do this to district SPs.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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