Within 75 days of the formation of the new government, as many as 10 secretaries in key central ministries will be retiring from service. And in another three months, 10 more secretaries will leave the government on reaching their age of superannuation.
The retirement of so many secretaries within a span of six months is unusual, says a government official. But this also gives the new government an opportunity to recast its top team of bureaucrats, he adds.
In all, 56 top Indian Administrative Service officers will be retiring between now and the end of November, according to the department of personnel and training.
Of these, 30 officers are posted in different state governments, 20 are positioned as secretaries in central ministries, four are occupying secretary-level positions in central organisations and one officer is holding a UNDP post.
The spate of retirements will see the departure of two key secretaries in the finance ministry -- Finance Secretary Dinesh Chandra Gupta in October and Revenue Secretary Vineeta Rai in September.
Earlier, Information and Broadcasting Secretary Pawan Chopra, Heavy Industries Secretary N K Narad, Youth Affairs and Sports Secretary Rajiv Srivastava and Food Processing Secretary J Vasudevan will retire by the end of May.
June will witness the retirement of Commerce Secretary Dipak Chatterjee (whose appointment as chairman of the Competition Commission of India is subject to the Supreme Court's clearance), Personnel and Training Secretary Arun Bhatnagar, Textiles Secretary Samar B Mohapatra and Civil Aviation Secretary K Roy Paul.
More high-profile secretaries are due to retire by the end of July, August, September, October and November.
These include Petroleum Secretary B K Chaturvedi (July), Tourism Secretary Rathi Vinay Jha (July), Labour Secretary P D Shenoy (September), Steel Secretary Binoo Sen (September), Company Affairs Secretary M M K Sardana (September), Information Technology Secretary K K Jaswal (October), Small Scale Industries Secretary B S Minhas (October), President's Secretariat Secretary P Madhavan Nair (October), Space Secretary S S Meenakshisundaram (November) and Cabinet Secretariat Secretary S K Purakayastha.
October will also see the retirement of Cabinet Secretary Kamal Pande. In addition, the new government will have to look for a new person to head the Tariff Commission, as its current chairman, V S Lakshmi Ratan, is due to retire by the end of June.
Also slated to retire from other secretary-level positions are IMPA Director General K Balakrishna Pillai in May, Finance Commission Member-Secretary M K Dixit in July and the Director General of the National Institute of Productivity, S K Pachauri, in August.