Madhya Pradesh IAS officer records conversation with official, shares it on messaging app
An Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer in Madhya Pradesh has been issued a show-cause notice for sharing an audio recording of his conversation with a senior official on a social messaging platform. In the recording, Lokesh Kumar Jangid, the IAS officer, is heard expressing displeasure over his transfer to the principal secretary of the General Administration Department (GAD).
Jangid, 35, who at the time was the additional collector of Barwani district in Madhya Pradesh, was on May 31 transferred to the state capital of Bhopal as the mission director of city-based Rajya Shiksha Kendra. This, according to Jangid, was his ninth transfer in just 54 months.
“I shared the audio with four IAS colleagues on personal chats. This was done after the transfer orders were issued in writing by the GAD and updated on its website. I shared it in good faith and in a personal capacity when they asked me why I was suddenly transferred,” Jangid said. "Since I was not given any reason, I shared the audio with them saying this is what the GAD principal secretary told me. I didn’t share it on any group," Jangid said about the 30-second clip.
The officer said he did not violate the conduct rules as the information was neither confidential nor personal in nature. He also denied that it was a violation of the GAD principal secretary’s privacy. “This audio was from May 31 and I was issued notice on Wednesday, after a gap of 17 days. I would respond to the notice at my own time,” the 2014-batch officer, who hails from Maharashtra’s Parbhani, said.
However, Deepti Gaur Mukherjee, the GAD’s principal secretary, said Jangid’s conduct was a breach of her privacy. “Jangid has been asked to reply in seven days. The matter pertains to a conversation he had with me. My job is only to tell the officers that they’ve been transferred. But he taped the conversation, which is an unbecoming act from a government officer,” Mukherjee said.
(With inputs from PTI)