In Govt calendar: male as female
This is an embarrassment the UPA has to put up with for at least two more weeks. The government calendar this year is themed on the flagship programmes and January - the first month - presents the direct cash transfers, which is termed as "the game-changer". While on the calendar it is written that DCT is being implemented in 51 districts, the scheme actually began only in 20 districts with programmes also cut by half. Further, reflecting the discrepancies reported in Aadhar cards issued in some places, the card a young woman holds (on the calendar) with a photo identifies her as male (Sabita Kumari S/O Prasad Lal). Officials said the photo is for representation purposes only, but showing a female as male certainly is bad presentation.
No test, no job
The environment ministry has cancelled appointment of at least 10 appointees to the Indian Forest Service after they failed to appear for the mandatory walking test and medical examination. The walking test is to evaluate one's ability to walk long distances in harsh forest areas and clearing it is a must to get into premier all-India cadre service.
PMO gets pro-active
The Prime Minister's Office wants the bureaucracy to proactively take decisions and utilise public money after the Planning Commission brought to the top office's notice that the ministries’ spending has been 30 to 40 % less than expected. The reason was reluctance on part of the bureaucracy to sign files fearing false complaints leading to unnecessary harassment in the wake of public gaze over corruption. "Even simple decisions are been held back in name of due diligence," a senior bureaucrat said.
In sync with seniority
Many in the corridors of power had assumed that after his shift to a smaller room in the South Block as an advisor to the Prime Minister, former principal secretary TKA Nair's role would also shrink. But Nair not only looks after issues related to North-East and progress report on other development activities, but regularly holds meetings with principal secretary Pulok Chatterjee and National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon on key issues. According to sources, these high-profile meetings take place mostly in Nair's room only in sync with his seniority.
Staying away from controversies
West Bengal chief secretary Sanjay Mitra is the blue-eyed bureaucrat of CM Mamata Banerjee. Although he enjoys Banerjee's confidence on several issues, Mitra steers clear of issues related to land and clearing encroachments. A few months ago, he refused to assure country's prestigious Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics prime land as per its choice near Kolkata for a physics project. Recently at a meeting with Kolkata metro rail officials, he couldn't promise that illegal encroachments would be evicted by government to clear the line of Metro's expansion.