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Repatriation of a Union Secretary Vs extension to CS

By Rakesh Ranjan- 18 Nov 2022


New Delhi (18.11.2022): With the superannuation date of the incumbent Chief Secretary (CS) of Madhya Pradesh Iqbal Singh Bains (IAS: 1985: MP) approaching fast, speculations are rife whether Bains will get an extension or hand over the baton to a successor from the Centre?
Previously, on several occasions, the Centre consented to extension for chief secretaries of non-BJP ruled states, so something similar shouldn’t be a surprise but it appears unlikely. Apparently, Bains may retire in the next 12 days. 
Some senior officers retiring in December 2022 including Union Secretary for Steel Sanjay Kumar Singh (IAS:1987:MP) and Shailendra Singh (IAS:1988:MP) are unlikely to be in the reckoning. But as per seniority and residual service, Union Secretary for Land Resources Ajay Tirkey (IAS:1987:MP) and IWAI Chairman Sanjay Bandyopadhyay (IAS:1988:MP) could be also be considered for the top job in the state but this appears unlikely.  Manoj Jhalani (IAS:1987:MP) has already taken VRS to take up the WHO position. 
Further, the state government may overlook Mohammed Suleman (IAS:1989:MP) as Bains’ successor but Anurag Jain (IAS: 1989: MP), Union Secretary, DPIIT under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, seems to have a distinct edge over others on several counts.
A section of senior civil servants says that Jain, an ex-PMO officer, in all likelihood may be the next CS which sounds logical in view of his smooth career progression as Joint Secretary & Additional Secretary in PMO in NaMo 0.1 and as VC DDA & Secretary, DPIIT in NaMo 0.2. 
Not only this, he is considered among CM Shivraj Singh Chauhan’s favorite officers. But what makes the progression interesting is that the equation between New Delhi and Bhopal has witnessed a shift; especially after Chauhan’s dropping from the BJP Parliamentary Board. A section of political pundits assumes that this could be Shivraj’s last inning as MP CM.
Taking a look back at Uttar Pradesh the out-of-the-way appointment of Durga Shanker Mishra as Chief Secretary shows that there is just one power center in the saffron outfit. 
As it is being speculated, the PMO man Anurag Jain’s repatriation as CS would be interesting to see as this will give rise to many more speculations instead of putting a lid on them. 
(By Rakesh Ranjan)  

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