Punjab government has cleared the first major hurdle to help Vidhan Sabha speaker Nirmal Singh Kahlon’s son become Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer through the nomination, it is learnt.
Top government sources said the January 20, 1974 born Dr Shiv Karan Singh Kahlon’s name---presently posted as senior medical officer in Amritsar--has been shortlisted allegedly following a mounting political pressure.
“Yes I had sent my application for the nomination into the IAS,” Dr Kahlon said when contacted.
Apart from the state civil services officers (Punjab Civil Service) who can become the IAS officer, another channel of joining the IAS is through nomination of the non-state civil services officers.
Punjab has one seat vacant for this category.
Two serving officers who joined the IAS through this route are the Punjab Pollution Control Board chairman Kahan Singh Pannu and secretary (food and civil supplies) DS Grewal.
A committee comprising chief secretary SC Agrawal, financial commissioner (revenue) AR Talwar and secretary (personnel) BS Sudan has finalised the panel of five candidates.
The state government had received 14 names for this post from different departments.
Besides the Speaker Kahlon’s son, four other shortlisted candidates are Dr Bhupinder Pal Singh, joint director in food and civil supply; Kamal Deep Singh, joint director cooperation department; Lakha Singh Toor, additional director welfare of SC and BC; and GS Mangat, additional registrar cooperation department.
The committee set up to choose the five candidates, government sources said, was under massive political pressure to shortlist Dr Shiv Karan Singh Kahlon and pick up four other candidates who are “politically, academically and administratively light weights” so that the Speaker’s son doesn’t face any challenge at the interview stage.
In the next steps the government will send this panel of five candidates to the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). One member of the UPSC, Punjab chief secretary and one senior most IAS officer of Punjab cadre will interview the shortlisted candidates.
Sources said the government had received 14 names of officers from different department for this post.
Those not considered by the screening committee headed by chief secretary are: Mohan Lal Sharma, economic adviser (planning department; Amarjeet Singh, an officer of law department; SK Batish, additional registrar (cooperation department); Dr Kamaldeep (medical officer); Dr Rajesh Sharma (medical officer); Mohan Beer Singh, additional director (technical education); Daljeet Kaur, additional director (technical education); Dr Jasbeer Singh , joint director (animal husbandry); and Dr Amrik Singh, a veterinary doctor.