Monday, March 19, 2012

Why this musical chair for ED’s post? Ranjan, Rakesh Singh and finally Katoch…

Rajan S Katoch
CALL it a musical chair to decide who is becoming new Enforcement Director. After the retirement of Arun Kumar Mathur in February end, the government was apparently confused in identifying his successor. And mind it. ED is no ordinary post. His directorate has been investigating multi-billion dollar 2G spectrum allocation case in addition to handling cases like ex-Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda and IAS couple Tinu and Arvind Joshi.
Before the government zeroed in on Dr Rajan S Katoch, a 1979 batch Madhya Pradesh cadre IAS, there were two appointments in just 15 days. First, Amitabh Ranjan, a 1979 batch Maharashtra cadre IAS was named as ED for a month. In less than a fortnight, the decision was altered, and another finance ministry official Rakesh Singh was made ED for month.
Ranjan who had earlier worked in personnel ministry under Prithviraj Chavan was picked up by Maharashtra CM to be state’s home secretary. Then, Rakesh Singh, a 1978 batch Punjab cadre IAS who is currently an additional secretary in the department of financial services, was chosen to handle the post for one month or until further order, according to an order dated March 13, 2012. Finally, Katoch currently additional secretary and financial adviser in ministry of commerce was named as ED. Katoch who sports a French cut beard is known in Udyog Bhawan as a suave and soft spoken bureaucrat. He will have a tough job ahead in trailing the scam money that might have landed up in tax havens.
There were unconfirmed reports claiming that finance ministry and PMO were not on the same page in choosing the ED. Arun Kumar Mathur who had served as ED from August 2008, had a fairly long innings but remained largely non-controversial. Only after he retired, a news report quoting an anonymous letter to Supreme Court which was reportedly written by ED officials themselves, claimed that a finance ministry bureaucrat tried to influence ED asking him to go slow on 2G case. The finance ministry issued a rebuttal saying that the allegation was baseless as the 2G investigation was being done jointly by the CBI and the Directorate of Enforcement under the close supervision of Supreme Court.

Babu Marriage
Ms Shanmuga Priya R, a 2010 batch Tamil Nadu cadre IAS, has been transferred to Madhya Pradesh cadre on ground of marriage to her batch-mate Ganesh Shankar Mishra, a 2010 batch Madhya Pradesh cadre IAS.

Action and Appointments
a) Ravindra Singh, 1979 batch UP cadre IAS, presently in the cadre, has been appointed as additional secretary in the ministry of culture in place of Rakesh Garg, a 1980 batch UP cadre IAS.

1 comment:

  1. Your Babu Marriage column is informative, interesting.