Delhi seems to be in a midst of a bureaucratic crisis as the ministry of home affairs (MHA) has reportedly initiated the process for transferring seven senior Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers out of Delhi.
The officers, said a senior Delhi government official, include principal secretary to chief minister MM Kutty, industry secretary Chetan B Sanghi, labour secretary Ramesh Tiwari, DJB chief executive officer Debashree Mukherjee, director of Municipal affairs RK Srivastava, SC/ST welfare secretary Janak Digal and commissioner of the newly created South Delhi Municipal Corporation Manish Gupta.
The sudden transfers prompted chief minister Sheila Dikshit to meet home minister P Chidambaram on Monday evening and register her protest.
Sources said that the Home Ministry should have taken the chief minister into confidence before initiating the transfer process in such a “brazen” manner. Dikshit, however, refused to divulge any details about her meeting.
The MHA’s move has come in just about a month after it shifted 39 IAS officers from several key departments in Delhi to states such as Goa, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram.
Senior Delhi government officials said that Delhi is already facing severe crisis of senior officials to run various important departments and administrative work will come to a grind if these seven officers are also shifted. A number of IAS officers in Delhi are handling two to three departments, which is affecting their performance and productivity.
Interestingly, Dikshit’s Special Secretary Keshav Chandra was among the 39 officers transferred by the MHA in April this year. Sources said that the MHA generally takes the chief minister into confidence while shifting her personal staff and more often than not refrains from touching two officers in the chief minister secretariat in such a short span of time.
The MHA had issued transfer orders of five senior IAS officers from several key departments of Delhi just ahead of budget session in 2011. Dikshit, however, had managed to persuade Chidambaram to put the transfer orders on hold for some time.