Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pak’s new economic team to chase IMF commitments; Boston-educated bureaucrat made finance secretary

PAKISTAN government has reshuffled its key economic team and made Waqar Masood Khan, a doctorate in economics from Boston University as the country’s finance secretary. Current finance secretary Salman Siddique has been appointed as the new Federal Board of Revenue chairman, a demotion in technical terms as the revenue department in Pakistan like that in India comes under the finance ministry.
The reshuffle of the nation’s elite economic team became necessary as Pakistan has been struggling to fulfill its commitments to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to Pakistan’s media report. The new team is likely to gear up for the imposition of the Reformed General Sales Tax (RGST) regime. Federal Board of Revenue chairman Sohail Ahmed has been posted as the federal planning and development secretary with immediate effect.
Boston-educated Waqar Masood Khan also holds an MA degree in economics and LLB from Karachi University. Currently, he has been working as special secretary to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. According to The Nation, the decision of the reshuffle was taken in a meeting attended by the country's President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.

BS Lalli on his way out
President Pratibha Patil has reportedly signed the order for suspension of Prasar Bharti CEO BS Lalli, a 1971 batch retired IAS officer. According to the Prasar Bharati Act, the chairman or a member of Prasar Bharti can only be removed by an order of the President on the ground of misbehaviour after the Supreme Court holds an inquiry following a reference to it. Lalli has faced an allegation of irregularities in awarding the contract for broadcast of Commonwealth Games to a UK-based firm SIS Live. Lalli has so far denied any wrong doing.

Action and Appointments
a) Ajay  Kumar, a 1985 batch Kerala cadre IAS has been appointed as joint secretary in the department of information and technology in place of Rakesh Singh, a 1978 batch Punjab cadre IAS who has become additional secretary in the department of financial services.
b) Ms. Anjali Anand Srivastava, a 1982 batch IAAS has been appointed as joint secretary and financial adviser in the ministry of coal.
c) Praveen Kumar Tiwari, a 1985 batch IAAS has been appointed as Director, Financial Intelligence Unit--India at joint secretary level. He replaces Arun Goyal, a 1985 batch UT cadre IAS who has become Minister (E and C) at Embassy of India, Tokyo.
d) Nar Singh Dev a 1996 batch IIS, presently working as joint secretary (director level)
in the UPSC has been appointed as OSD to the minister of parliamentary affairs Pawan Kumar Bansal.
e) Ajay Kumar Singh, a 1989 batch Jharkhand cadre IPS has been appointed as director in the ministry of home affairs.

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