Housing and environment deputy secretary Ramesh S Thete, a controversial IAS officer of 1993 batch, has now written an open letter to Dalit and tribal officers and employees of the state, accusing chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan of deep casteist bias and taking Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) for granted.
"People of these communities have helped him acquire CM’s chair and CM is treating them like servants," he wrote.
Thete in his letter further appealed to SC and ST officers and employees to rise up, "as casteism is at its peak and you are being deprived of promotions and growth". It is surprising that the community that is less than 5% of the state population is occupying more than 90% key posts, while Dalit and tribals that are 36.2% are victims of discrimination, he wrote.
According to Thete, MP government is instilling fear among SC/ST employees in the name of departmental inquiry, false cases and compulsory retirement. This is being done so that employees from these communities remain silent and on the other hand upper caste employees could be given promotion and postings of their choice.
Citing example of public health and engineering department, Thete accused the principal secretary, Radheshyam Juilania of being unjust with "most" of the employees from SC and ST community.
Thete appealed to all officials, employees like doctors, engineers, teachers, clerks, patwaris and class 4 employees from the community to unite and raise voice against the current "anti-Dalit regime". He has also provided his official address, room number 138, first floor, Vallabh Bhawan and his mobile number to all and urged them to contact and remain ready to struggle for their rights.
Thete was suspended in 2002 after Lokayukta's Special Police Establishment allegedly caught him taking Rs 1 lakh bribe from the principal of a technical institute. However, he was cleared from the bribery charge by the MP high court and then the Supreme Court. He was reinstated only after he threatened self-immolation.