Dr Viswapati Trivedi, secretary, Union Ministry of Mines, has been abruptly shunted out without prior intimation.
It seems the UPA II does not have a uniform personnel policy but has turned out to be of vindictive and vengeanceful dispensation if the topmost official does not toe the line of approach of either the Prime Minister's Office or the Cabinet Secretariat.
This shocking transfer has led to a stressful situation for the entire babudom.
The secretary, Union ministry of mines, is a jinxed posting. Dr Trivedi is the second secretary to be moved out in a year after Vijay Kumar for having picked up differences of opinion with Union minister Dinsha Patel.
The buzz is that PMO transferred Dr Trivedi for not consulting the Cabinet before placing the report of the Justice Shah Commission in the Parliament. The report was fully discussed by the mines minister with all those concerned. Even after the Cabinet consideration the report would have had to go to the Parliament. No one could do anything.
Critics feel the UPA II has double-standard approach. The government never placed CAG reports even after receiving it, especially the coal scam report, but found faults with the secretary for not placing the Justice Shah report on the mines scam in Goa.
Informed sources say eight senior secretaries to the government of India, who are from 1977 and 1978 batches, plan to meet first, and later decide to meet Cabinet Secretary Ajit Seth in a group to protest against the ill-reatment meted out to the senior IAS officers.
Nowadays IAS officers have no safety guards to continue in the services. They are being treated like peons, moved out like peons, sources say.
Union ministers give wrong replies in the Parliament and later replies can be modified, but for IAS officers there is no protection either from the PMO or from the Cabinet secretariat.
As an observer of the bureaucracy, a former Cabinet secretary told Rediff.com that present dispensation like Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister Pulok Chatterjee or Cabinet Secretary Aiit Seth had not held a secretary.
"And no justice could be expected from these two officers," he said.
No policy file is being dealt by a joint secretary in the UPA II, as most of them fear that like Behuras they may undergo imprisonment for minuting the notes which are generally against the government policies.
So far eight senior IAS officials holding the post of secretary to the government of India were abruptly removed or shunted out as they did not toe the lines of their ministers.