Exceptions are becoming normal and they have come to define the functioning of the NDA government. Take, for instance, the appointment of Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha on June 19 to the post of Special Secretary, Ministry of Aayush. Kotecha, a private person and Chief Consultant, Chakrapani Ayurveda Clinic, Jaipur, will draw the Apex Scale which is one of the basic criteria for an official to hold a Secretary-rank post in Govt of India.
Apparently, the appointment of P Parameshwaran Iyer was probably the first indication of the government following the principle of ‘exceptions’ as a rule. Till then, it was not perceived as a big deviation as Iyer, a former IAS officer, was well versed with the functioning of the Govt and had global exposure in the field which required expertise.
Vaidya R Kotecha, too, is an expert in his field but designating him as Special Secretary, rather than Adviser, sends out unmistakable signals of the government desire to hire professionals in governance on the pattern of US administration.
The re-appointment of several top officials on contractual basis (namely, NIA Chief; DG, Civil Defence; Secretary, NDMA etc) is no longer an exception also because re-appointment of retired senior most civil servants are neither exceptional or regular phenomena. But the appointment of a private professional is non-less than a loud indication for few more lateral entries in near future.