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2017 batch IPS officer-trainees with President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, in New Delhi on October 12.

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Monday, August 17, 2009

babuz no 1: Pulok Chaterji is India’s most powerful bureaucrat; find out who are no 2, 3, 4 & 5

IN GOVERNMENT, no one feels he is unimportant. From the person who signs and receives a letter to the secretary of a department who takes all major decisions, everyone in power corridor seriously attempts to make his or her presence felt. After all, each individual in the government is powerful enough to speed up a process, or paralyze it completely. If everyone in the system is so powerful, who should qualify to be babuz or India’s most powerful bureaucrats? According to the feedback received by babu blogger from at least 30 senior bureaucrats in the country, 5 babuz or 5 most powerful bureaucrats in India have been chosen. While selecting the list of top 5 babuz, more weightage is given to the clout that he or she has on the system rather than the significance of the post that the bureaucrat is currently holding.

Pulok Chaterji, babuz no 1 A 1974 batch IAS from Uttar Pradesh cadre, Pulok Chaterji could now be posted far away in Washington DC as an executive director of the World Bank, but his one phone call carries more power than many important files doing round the power corridors of Delhi. But what makes him so special and powerful? A secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) till recently, Mr Chaterje’s personal equation with Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s family can’t be ignored by anyone in the government including those who are senior to him. After all, he served as district magistrate of Rae Bareli in early 1980s, a director in the PMO during Rajiv Gandhi’s time, a secretary (joint secretary equivalent) in Rajiv Gandhi Foundation in early 1990s, and then a private secretary to Sonia Gandhi when she was the leader of the Opposition. What’s more, he is a highly efficient officer with a clear focus on delivery. There is already a buzz that the man who had a say in virtually every appointment of the government during Dr Manmohan Singh’s first innings, may soon come back to power pockets of Raisina Hill. Watch out this space in the coming days to find out who are the babuz no 2, 3, 4 & 5. Read "BoI announcement on Spotting The babuz" posted on July 28, 2009. Other News: Over 3000 vacant posts of judges to be filled up The government may soon expedite the process of filling up vacancies of judges in various courts including those in High Courts, Prime Minister indicated it in a joint conference of chief ministers and chief justices in New Delhi on Sunday. “The existing vacancies in High Courts are quite high in number and need to be filled up urgently. I would urge the Chief Justices of High Courts to initiate proposals for quickly filling up these posts, he said. Also, the process will begin to fill up about 3000 posts of judges in the country which are now vacant because of delay in recruitment, he indicated.

5 comments:

  1. I do agree that Mr Pulok Chaterje is most powerful even now.

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  2. Yes...no doubt about Mr Chaterrji...His is the most powerful babus around...

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  3. How can someone be the most powerful babu if he is based out of US? Maybe, he used to be the most powerful, or he could be again be the most powerful in the days to come... But yes, Pulok Chaterje is very close to the Gandhi family and I am not surprised by the observation that he is taken very seriously even by his senior colleagues. --- From power corridor

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  4. A somewhat convoluted view could be that Pulak Chatterji is most powerful becuase he is based in USA and close to Gandhi family. What a combination of two most powerful cliques running the country (Gandhis and the USA) !!

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  5. Why do we need babus? Why do we glorify them? Why can't they be stripped of their powers and made to stop interfering in the lives of people? This is the problem with India - its feudal and slave psyche. We don't see babus throwing their weight around in the true democracies of the world - because the citizens wield the true power there. Our democracy is a farce as long as these babus,the politicians and goons stay in power. WAKE UP!

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