After being superseded by Mukim, Agrawal still awaits new posting

Pankaj Kumar, Rajiv Gupta and Vipul Mitra being considered for ACS Finance.

Ahmedabad: The senior-most and 1985 batch Gujarat cadre IAS officer, who, along with Anil Mukim, was a front-runner for the post of the Chief Secretary, after being superseded by Mukim, now feels humiliated and completely side-lined in the “new scheme of things” of Rupani government. The reason… even after four days of Mukim’s posting, Agrawal has yet not been given any suitable posting outside Secretariat, maintaining a well established tradition to not put the senior most superseded officer under the charge and supervision of a comparatively junior officer, who emerges as a winner in the game. In such an embarrassing situation, Agrawal has already stopped attending his office as ACS Finance, since Mukim took over as the new CS as JN Singh retired from the post on 30th November.

For the last four days, there is a speculation in the power corridors saying that Agrawal may be posted as the Managing Director of the blue-chip Gujarat State Fertilizers and Chemicals limited, but till Tuesday night, no orders were issued. This has left Agrawal completely disappointed and side-lined. Moreover, this development is being seen as “unprecedented”, because in such cases, the superseded officer was given a new posting same day outside the Secretariat, but Agrawal’s case is being seen as an exception to this practice.

Recalling the past precedents, one senior bureaucrat told First India that when in the past PK Lahiri superseded four of his senior IAS officers – CK Koshi, Ashok Narayan, Nethra Shenoy and Sunil Sud – as the CS, the four had been given assignments outside the Secretariat the same day. On another such occasion in the recent past, SK Nanda, the senior-most IAS, was moved out of the secretariat and appointed as the Managing Director of GSFC on the same day on the he was superseded by DJ Pandian for the CS post. Both the precedents were recorded during Narendra Modi’s tenure as Gujarat Chief Minister.

Meanwhile, for the likely vacancy of ACS finance, after exit of Agrawal, the names of three senior bureaucrats ie Pankaj Kumar, Rajiv Gupta and Vipul Mitra are doing the rounds.