Monday, February 27, 2012

New IT secretary J Sathyanarayana’s old story of a “Smart Government”

WITH J Sathyanarayana, a 1977 batch Andhra Pradesh cadre IAS, being appointed as secretary in the department of Information Technology, two IAS officers who had dreamt of a “smart government” 10 years ago, will now share the same ministry in Delhi. The other IAS officer of the same Andhra Pradesh cadre is Rentala Chandrasekhar who is now telecom secretary. Both Sathyanarayana and Chandrasekhar will report to the same minister, Kapil Sibal. And if they wish, both secretaries will be able to talk to each other in Telugu. Here is the untold story. In 2002, then NDA government decided to start an organization called National Institute for Smart Government (NISG). It was formed as a Section 25 company. R Chandrasekhar, an Andhra Pradesh cadre IAS and then joint secretary in the ministry of defence (under transfer to ministry of information technology), was identified as the Officer on Special Duty for the project. Those were the high days of Hyderabad converting itself into an IT hub, and officers from the state were in high demand thanks to their tech savvy attitude. And mind it, those were the days when most IAS officers did not even know how to log into a computer and send a mail.
And the man who became the CEO of National Institute for Smart Government for five years between 2003 and 2008 was J Sathyanarayana. A post graduate in physics, Sathyanarayana was considered to be the right choice for the job because of his experience as principal secretary to Andhra Pradesh’s buzzing IT department.
Sathyanarayana is an MBA from Yugoslavia. For 10 months till August 2011, he was also the special chief secretary to Andhra Pradesh chief minister.

Action and Appointments
a) The Appointments Committee of Cabinet has asked law ministry to identify an Officer on Special Duty (OSD) to law minister Salman Khurshid by June 30, 2012. Till then Giri Ketharaj, joint director of Institute of Cost and Works Accountants of India will be Khurshid’s OSD. The issue was taken up after Khurshid wrote a letter to PM on August 16, 2011 regarding the issue.
b) Tourism secretary RH Khwaja, a 1976 batch Andhra Pradesh cadre IAS, will hold additional charge of secretary, ministry of culture for a period of three months.
c) Click HERE to find 1992 batch IAS officers, empaneled as joint secretaries

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