The Union government has given a two month extension to Haryana chief secretary, Shakuntala Jakhu enabling her to continue at the top post till November 30. Clearance from the Election Commission (EC) was also sought in this regard. Jakhu, a 1978-batch IAS officer took over as chief secretary on August 1 and would have retired on September 30 but for the extension in service.
Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda had sought a three-month extension of service for Jakhu from the central government. However, the opposition Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) had opposed her extension and written to the chief election commissioner against granting extension to her citing political reasons. Jakhu’s husband and retired IAS officer, Ramendra Jakhu had recently joined the BJP. The INLD complaint also said that Shakuntala Jakhu was a close relative of former Congress minister Kumari Selja. The request for a three-month extension in service for Jakhu was made under the provisions of All India Services (Death-cum-Retirement Benefit) Rules, 1958.
As per the rules, a member of the all India service holding the post of chief secretary to a state government may be given extension of service for a period not exceeding six months on the recommendation made by the state government with full justification and in public interest with the prior approval of the Centre