Rahul Bhatnagar appointed UP Chief Secretary, Shivpal’s close aide sacked

Deepak Singhal, who is considered close to Cabinet Minister Shivpal Singh Yadav, has been replaced by his junior, a 1983 batch IAS officer Rahul Prasad Bhatnagar.

Written by Lalmani Verma | Lahore | Updated: September 13, 2016 4:16 pm
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A day after sacking two high-profile ministers of his government—while both them were close to Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav– Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav in a surprising move today removed 1982-batch IAS officer Deepak Singhal from the post of Chief Secretary of UP. Singhal, who is considered close to Cabinet Minister Shivpal Singh Yadav, has been replaced by his junior—a 1983 batch IAS officer Rahul Prasad Bhatnagar.

CM removed Singhal from post of Chief Secretary, only two months after his appointment on the top post in state bureaucracy. Singhal had taken charge of Chief Secretary on July 6.

CM today put Singhal in the wait list and appointed Bhatnagar as new chief secretary of the state. Singhal was also holding post of Principal Resident Commissioner, UP in New Delhi and Chairman of PICUP. All these responsibilities have been transferred to Bhatnagar.

Bhatnagar was so far holding post of Finance Commissioner, Principal Secretary to Finance, Institutional Finance, and Additional Resident Commissioner of UP in New Delhi and Principal Secretary of Sugar Industries and Cane Development.

Singhal, who held significant posts when Mulayam Singh Yadav was the chief minister, was holding the post of Principal Secretary in the Irrigation Department—a portfolio held by Shivpal—since the present government was formed in 2012. For a brief while, he was sent to the Home Department in the same capacity but was brought back to Irrigation department two weeks later.

“Singhal was considered very close to Shivpal and Akhilesh’s decision could become another reason of differences between Akhilesh and his uncle Shivpal. Differences between both had leaders had surfaced only three months back over merger of Quami Ekta Dal (QED) in SP,” a SP leader said.

CM on Monday had dismissed Mining Minister Gayatri Prajapati and Panchayati Raj Minister Raj Kishor Singh from the cabinet, reportedly over charges on corruption.