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  Opinion   Columnists  05 Oct 2023  Dilip Cherian | Amit Khare to continue as adviser to PM

Dilip Cherian | Amit Khare to continue as adviser to PM

Love them, hate them ignore them at national peril, is the babu guarantee and Dilip’s belief. Share significant babu escapades dilipcherian@hotmail.com
Published : Oct 5, 2023, 12:56 am IST
Updated : Oct 5, 2023, 12:56 am IST

The extension of Mr Khare’s tenure signals a commitment to continuity and stability within the government.

Amit Khare. (Image: Twitter)
 Amit Khare. (Image: Twitter)

In a significant development, the Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) has extended the tenure of Amit Khare as adviser to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, until the completion of his term as Prime Minister, which is set to conclude in May 2024.

Mr Khare’s journey into his current role was rapid. A mere two weeks after his retirement as secretary of higher education in September 2021, he was appointed as adviser to the Prime Minister, initially for two years. His remarkable career trajectory exemplifies the trust and confidence placed in him by the highest echelons of the government. Additionally, while serving as the secretary for higher education, Mr Khare also assumed the additional charge of information and broadcasting, affording him the unique opportunity to work in seamless coordination with the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) for over a year.

The extension of Mr Khare’s tenure carries several implications. It signals a commitment to continuity and stability within the government, emphasising the importance of experience and institutional memory in steering the ship of state. Mr Khare’s expertise and close association with the PMO during his dual role undoubtedly played a pivotal part in securing this extension.

Is Bihar’s top cop ready for change?

If the grapevine is to be trusted, Bihar Director General of Police (DGP) Rajwinder Singh Bhatti is discreetly exploring the possibility of securing a director general (DG) rank position within the Central paramilitary forces or the Central Police Organization.

It’s worth noting that Mr Bhatti, who became DGP in December 2022, has an impeccable track record during his tenure as the joint director of the CBI and chief vigilance officer (CVO) of the Airport Authorities of India in Delhi. The speculation surrounding his desire to seek a central posting within a year of becoming state DGP raises questions and fuels conjecture.

Some senior officers of the Bihar cadre, according to sources, believe that Bhatti may be struggling to navigate the state dynamics after chief minister Nitish Kumar split from the BJP. As we approach the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, managing law and order in Bihar, especially under the RJD-JD(U) government may be a formidable task, laden with high expectations and challenges.

So, does Mr Bhatti yearn for a more tranquil assignment at the Centre? Interestingly the prolonged delay in appointing a new DG for the CISF has only added to the speculation. Mr Bhatti’s potential shift from Bihar to the Centre, if it materialises, will undoubtedly be watched with keen interest.

A cautionary tale

IAS officer Rinku Dugga has been compulsorily retired by the government in the public interest on the grounds of “lack of integrity and ineffectiveness”.  It’s worth noting that this decision was handed down almost two months ago. Curiously, the government asserts that this action is unrelated to the controversial incident involving Ms Dugga and her husband Sanjay Khirwar, also an IAS officer.

The couple were accused of clearing Thyagraj Stadium in Delhi last year to accommodate their dog-walking activities. The ministry of home affairs (MHA) had transferred the duo which was then serving in the Delhi government, on allegations of misusing the stadium’s facilities. In the aftermath of this episode, Mr Khirwar was relocated to Ladakh while Ms Dugga was reassigned to Arunachal Pradesh, pending an inquiry.

The government order of retirement emanated from the MHA since Ms Dugga was a 1994-batch AGMUT cadre officer which falls under the purview of the home ministry, instead of the department of personnel and training (DoPT). Apparently, in the past three years, 122 officers have been compulsorily retired, as disclosed in the Lok Sabha by the government.

The Dugga case serves as a cautionary tale of babu excesses and, hopefully, sends out a strong message that the government aims to enforce accountability wherever officers are found to misuse their status and powers. 

Tags: amit khare, dilip cherian