The Congress government in Haryana got into a controversy when it issued an order giving temporary charge of the archives department, held by senior IAS officer Ashok Khemka, to another IAS officer on Tuesday.
Khemka, who has been transferred at least 42 times in his 22 years in service, has been in the news ever since he cancelled the mutation of the Robert Vadra-DLF land deal last year as director general of Haryana’s land consolidation department.
He told mediapersons that the order meant he was without work, without a salary and that this caused him “unnecessary mental trauma and harassment”.
However, personnel department secretary Arun Gupta justified the order, saying Khemka was one of the IAS officers in Haryana to be placed in reserve for election duty in states where assembly polls are being held. He said an officer designated to take additional charge of the archives department would do so only when Khemka proceeds on election duty.
Officers from the reserve list are sent as substitutes when an election observer opts out or is unable to conduct elections due to an emergency.
Khemka is also under the scanner of the state government, which has decided to charge-sheet him for “administrative misconduct” and “overstepping his jurisdiction” in cancelling the mutation of the Vadra-DLF land deal and for the alleged low sale of wheat seeds by the Haryana Seeds Development Corporation during his stint as its managing director.