Rejig in PMO as Principal Secretary Nripendra Misra quits

Nripendra Misra. File

Nripendra Misra. File   | Photo Credit: V. Sudershan

Sources indicate that Nripendra Misra is likely to be appointed as Lieutenant Governor of Delhi.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s top bureaucratic aide and Principal Secretary (PS) since 2014, Nripendra Misra, quit from his powerful position on Friday, prompting a rejig in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO). He, however, will continue for two more weeks on Mr. Modi's request.

Mr. Modi has appointed outgoing Cabinet Secretary P.K. Sinha as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) in the PMO.

Top sources told The Hindu that P.K. Mishra, currently Additional PS to the Prime Minister, is set to replace Mr. Misra, and Mr. Sinha will become the Additional PS.

The sources indicated that Mr. Misra is likely to be appointed as Lieutenant Governor of Delhi.

It may be noted that Delhi will face Assembly polls next year.

“Shri Nripendra Misra is among the most outstanding officers, who has a great grasp of public policy and administration. When I was new to Delhi in 2014, he taught me a lot and his guidance remains extremely valuable," Mr. Modi tweeted, after the news of Mr. Misra’s move to quit the PMO became public.

According to Mr. Modi, Mr. Misra had helped him not just on a personal capacity but was an important aide in the past five years in the PMO. “After serving the PMO assiduously and diligently for over five years and making an indelible contribution to India's growth trajectory, Shri Nripendra Misra Ji will be embarking on a new phase of his life. My best wishes to him for his future endeavours,” Mr. Modi posted on Twitter.

He added that Mr. Misra, 74, had expressed his wish to quit after the elections but had continued on his request and now would work for two more weeks in September.

Thanks PM

In a press statement, Mr. Misra, a Uttar Pradesh cadre widely experienced bureaucrat who served as Secretary, Telecom, and Secretary, Fertilizers, and also as chairperson of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), thanked the Prime Minister for the opportunity to work in the PMO and placing complete faith in him.

“It has been a privilege to serve the country under Hon Prime Minister Narendra Modi Ji. I am deeply grateful to him for this opportunity and the complete confidence he has placed in me,” he said.

In June last, after the parliamentary polls, Mr. Modi reappointed his top bureaucrats, including both Mr. Misra, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Mr. Mishra gave them the status of a Cabinet Minister.

A number of appointments were made in the PMO on Friday. Arvind Shrivastava, Joint Secretary, Economic Affairs, Finance Ministry, has been shifted to the PMO. Four Deputy Secretaries were also appointed — Gujarat-cadre IAS officer Hardik Shah, currently Private Secretary to the Union Environment Minister; two Indian Foreign Service officers, Abhishek Shukla of the 2006 batch and Pratik Mathur of the 2007 batch; and Saurabh Shukla of the Indian Audit & Accounts Service.

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Printable version | May 31, 2020 12:54:40 AM |

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