Haryana IAS officer Ashok Khemka, who has been transferred 53 times during his 27 years in the civil services, is now subject of a book by two Delhi-based journalists.
‘Just Transferred: The untold story of Ashok Khemka’ by Bhavdeep Kang and Namita Kala, which will be out on March 5, chronicles his journey from his birth into a middle-class family in Kolkata, to topping IIT, Kharagpur in 1988 and then cracking the civil services in 1991.
Khemka (54), who hit headlines when he cancelled the mutation of land deal between Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s son in-law Robert Vadra and real estate giant DLF during the Congress regime, faced his last transfer in November 2019. He is currently, Principal Secretary of Haryana Archives, Archeology and Museums Department.
According to the book, “throughout his career, Khemka has suffered at the hands of his political masters for his refusal to compromise….the actions of those with vested interests have not been able to shake his indomitable spirit.”
About the cancellation of mutation of Vadra’s land deal, the book mentions, “With the Congress party in power, most people called it a suicidal move.” But, “true to his reputation for being scrupulously honest, Khemka didn’t budge”.
The publishers claim that the book will offer an insider’s view of India’s administrative machinery.
Former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha said: “Ashok Khemka’s career is an example of what happens to an officer when he stands up for what he considers to be right.”
Former SC judge GS Singhvi said, “There are very few like Ashok Khemka who never compromise on morality, ethics and honesty in the performance of their duties.”
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