It’s Pillai vs. Pillai for the top administrative post in India. Labour secretary Sudha Pillai and her spouse and IAS batch-mate commerce secretary G K Pillai have turned out to be key contenders for the post of cabinet secretary, which will lie vacant in mid-June when current incumbent K M Chandrasekhar retires. Whereas Ms Pillai tops the current merit and seniority list of IAS officers of 1972 batch, her husband comes just next to her among 32 officials of the same-batch, who are working at different capacities in the government. If Ms Pillai finally makes it to the key post which will be decided by the next Prime Minister of the country, she will be the first woman to reach the top administrative position. Both Mr and Ms Pillai are from Kerala cadre, which means another Kerala cadre official will definitely succeed Mr Chandrasekhar of 1970 batch who is also from the same cadre. Some of the other prominent officers of the same batch include secretary to PMO M N Prasad (Bihar cadre), information and broadcasting (I&B) secretary Ms Sushma Singh (Jharkhand cadre) and urban development secretary M Ramachandran (Uttaranchal cadre). Babu Blogger spoke to a number of IAS officers to come to a conclusion that no government can afford to be so gender bias to deprive Ms Pillai though some said in private that no woman would eventually be given that key post, and Ms Pillai would be rehabilitated somehow to make way for G K Pillai. But what’s if Mr Chandrasekhar’s term which expires on June 13, 2009, gets extended for one more year. Babu Blogger will give you later a few more perspectives on who else would be benefited if such a development takes place.