The Modi sarkar continues to draw on babu talent from outside or at least almost-outside-talent.
Senior Rajasthan cadre IPS officer Indu Kumar Bhushan, who was awaiting posting orders, has been compulsorily retired by the government “in public interest”. Sources say that the proposal concerning the cop’s retirement was forwarded to the ministry of home affairs last November and has recently been accepted by the Centre.
The 1989-batch IPS officer who has the rank of an additional director general has had a controversial career. He was kept under “awaiting posting order” (APO) five times for various reasons. In September 2016, he was sent to Jaipur from the National Police Academy, Hyderabad for allegedly questioning the knowledge of Telangana governor E.S.L. Narasimhan during a mid-career training programme. Last year, he levelled corruption charges against the top brass of the state police. He also allegedly abused and thrashed his driver and gunman in 2013.The state government clearly decided to pull the plug on the cop who crossed the line one time too many.
No longer outsiders
The Modi sarkar continues to draw on babu talent from outside or at least almost-outside-talent. The appointment of former IAS officer Indu Bhushan as the new CEO of Ayushman Bharat National Health Protection Mission has drawn a parallel with the appointment of Parmeswaran Iyer who spearheads the Swachh Bharat Mission. Both officers had left the IAS for greener pastures but have been tapped by the Centre to lead pivotal government schemes.
Mr Bhushan, a 1983-batch IAS officer of the Rajasthan cadre, quit the service and worked briefly with the World Bank before joining the Asian Development Bank, Manila in 1997 as director. Mr Iyer too had quit the IAS and joined the World Bank before Mr Modi summoned him back to head the Swachh Bharat Mission. Mr Bhushan will be heading the Centre’s Ayushman Bharat, a mega health insurance programme that’s set to cover 10 crore families. It’s proposed that the scheme will have benefit cover of Rs 5 lakh per family per year.
Observers note that lateral hiring of outside talent has become a hallmark of the Modi government. The other salient feature is the steady ingress of non-IAS officers (such as from the IFS and the IES etc.) in positions previously held by IAS officers, most recently seen in a slew of appointments at the joint secretary level.
Political compulsion arising from the approaching state Assembly elections this year could be behind MP chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s move to introduce the police commissioner system in cities of the state.
The CM had made a similar move in April 2012, when he announced the implementation of the police commissioner system in Bhopal and Indore. However, the process ended up in senior superintendent of police system being implemented in the two cities when crimes registered a sharp increase. Now, in view of increasing crime in the state he’s raised the matter again.
According to sources, Mr Chouhan could implement the initial move after resistance from the IAS officers. The issue has been a bone of contention with both IAS and IPS officers as the former do not want to share their “magisterial” powers with their counterparts in the police. While top IPS brass, including DGP Rishi Kumar Shukla, are tight-lipped over the reported move, the state chief Secretary B.P. Singh has admitted that the government is preparing a proposal for immediate decision.
The buzz is that if the government takes it up seriously, the proposal to implement the new system would be officially passed “very soon”. Provided, of course, the government can “convert” the IAS officers to the idea.