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Prime Minister Narendra Modi with 2018 batch officer trainees of Indian Foreign Service (IFS) on May 20, 2019 in New Delhi

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Japanese town bans sporting beard by bureaucrats

SOUNDS funny, but if the same rules apply in India’s corridors of power too, food processing industries secretary Ashok Sinha who sports a French cut beard or urban development secretary M Ramachandran will have no other options but to rush to the bathroom with a razor in hand and come clean, virtually.
Yes you have guessed it just right! Officials of a Japanese town Isesaki under Gunma Prefecture were recently told to shave off their facial hair after the municipal authority received a strange complaint from public that dealing with bearded bureaucrats is "unpleasant".
A section of media reports said that the ban, the first of its kind among Japanese public officials, is applicable to all kind of facial hair, “from lovingly cultivated full beards to trendy goatees and designer stubble”. Though Japanese companies too emphasize on physical appearances, it’s the first time that there has been a diktat on how a public servant should look. But the big question remains --- will smooth-chinned bureaucrats deliver better, or deal with public more efficiently? Only time will tell that. But for now it’s more a bureaucratic decision!
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IAS contemplates to leave service to join politics
Uttam P Khobragade, a Maharashtra cadre IAS of 1984 batch, is reportedly leaving his job to join active politics. An LLB degree holder, Khobragade, who served as GM of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport undertaking (BEST), was recently relocated as principal secretary of the tribal development department. Mr Khobragade, who was unhappy with the transfer, has not yet joined his new post. What’s more, several Dalit organizations staged protests in parts of the state in support of the IAS officer. A believer of Ambedkar’s ideologies, he is close to several political bigwigs including former CM and union minister Vilasrao Deshmukh. 
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