Uttar Pradesh Governor TV Rajeshwar has turned down Chief Minister Mayawati's recommendation of Ram Kumar, a 'tainted' former bureaucrat, for the post of the state's chief information commissioner (CIC), officials said on Wednesday.
A 'confidential' letter sent to the chief minister by Raj Bhavan late on Tuesday clearly spells out the retired Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer's 'tainted' track record as the reason for denial of his appointment to the key constitutional position.
"Kumar was not only found to be involved in financial bungling but was also forced to retire on that account," an official of the department of personnel told IANS on condition of anonymity.
However, the former bureaucrat got some relief from the public services tribunal, following which his services were restored just prior to his superannuation. That was shortly followed by his recommendation for the pulm post of CIC.
Raj Bhavan sources said the recommendation was sent to the governor in March. Initially, he held back the appointment because of the declaration of Lok Sabha elections and enforcement of the model code of conduct.
The position had fallen vacant following the unceremonious removal of the last incumbent MA Khan, a retired Allahabad High Court judge who was as much embroiled in controversies as Kumar.
Following the governor's refusal to accept Kumar's appointment, most bureaucrats have advised Mayawati to consider a fresh name for the post while some are in favour of pushing Kumar's name again, official sources said.
"The kind of reputation Kumar enjoys is bound to give the chief minister a bad name in case she chooses to re-nominate him. So, it would be so much better is someone else was considered," said a senior IAS officer, who did not wish to be identified.
A Raj Bhavan official told IANS that the meeting for selection of a new CIC is now scheduled to be held June 24. Unlike the last time, when Kumar was nominated, leader of opposition Mulayam Singh Yadav would also be attending the meeting.
"The opposition leader was not available for the selection committee meeting in March, but his younger brother Shivpal Yadav has confirmed that Mulayam Singh will attend the meeting later this month," said the official.