May 30, 2021 2:42:09 am
The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Saturday asked new Chief Secretary of the Union Territory, Arun Kumar Mehta, to start official work with effect from Monday, an order former J&K chief minister Omar Abullah termed as “very unusual”.
The incumbent, B V R Subrahmanyam, has been transferred to the Centre.
“Consequent upon the appointment of B.V.R. Subrahmanyam, IAS (CG: 1987) as Officer on Special duty in the Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India, and appointment of Arun Kumar Mehta, IAS (AGMUT:1988) as Chief Secretary, J&K, it is hereby ordered that all powers vested with the Chief Secretary for disposing official business shall now be exercised by Arun Kumar Mehta, w.e.f. 31 202,’’ an order issued by General Administration Department of the UT stated.
“Accordingly, all Administrative Departments are directed to address/mark all papers and files to Shri Arun Kumar Mehta, IAS w.e.f. 31st May, 2021,’’ it added, quoting the order from J&K Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha.
There was no official word citing any reason for the order. National Conference leader Abdullah tweeted, “…If I didn’t know better I’d read this order to mean the outgoing CS wasn’t too keen to hand over charge to his successor. Either way I haven’t seen an order like this before.”
He also tweeted, “A man who famously said no Kashmiris shed tears when mainstream politicians were detained in 2019. In 2021 it looks like no one can wait to show him the door. Be careful who you step on on the way up, you will meet them on the way down.”
People’s Conference chief and former J&K minister Sajad Lone posted on the social media network, “Just dawned on me that the new CS Mr AK Mehta is from the state cadre. It is natural that he will have a sense of belonging. Hope we always get an officer from our cadre. May I add that I personally don’t know Mr Mehta. Have never seen him. Have never met him.”
On Friday, reacting to Subrahmanyam’s transfer, Lone had tweeted: “Will be remembered as the darkest person in the darkest hours of Kashmir. A person consumed by the self and also consumed by hatred for the Kashmiris. Saw expression of naked hatred for Kashmiris and belittlement of Kashmiris as a means of upward mobility for his self…”
In Jammu, pro-Hindutva outfit IkkJutt Jammu’s chairman Ankur Sharma demanded a thorough probe into Subrahmanyam’s role as the UT Chief Secretary and said only removing him from the transferring him out is not enough. “There is an imperative necessity to change policy structures followed in J&K during his tenure, most importantly after abrogation of (Article) 370/35-A,” Sharma said. “Most policies (the) outgoing CS pursued destroyed the positive impact of the abrogation of Article 370. The thrust of his policies was to assure Overground Separatists that nothing has changed in J&K even after 370/35-A abrogation. His role in many cases of corruption, especially cover-ups, also need to be scrutinised.”
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.