Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Amarjit Sinha quits PMO prematurely as Adviser

Major Bureaucratic reshuffle in offing

Harish Gupta, National Editor, Lokmat Group
New Delhi, Aug 2

With the premature resignation of Amarjeet Sinha as Adviser, Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), speculation is rife that Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba may be brought in. Gauba’s two year tenure as Cabinet Secretary is ending on August 30 this year. The PMO is already faced with the exit of P K Sinha who quit as Principal Adviser, PMO a few months ago prematurely.

Sinha was Modi’s favourite officer who was appointed Cabinet Secretary by the Modi government in May 2015 and continued in the post for four years. P K Sinha was brought in the PMO in August 2019 but opted out earlier this year.

Amarjit Sinha too was appointed as Adviser, PMO, quit prematurely on July 31, 2021 though he had seven more months to go. Sinha is a retired IAS officer of 1983 batch of Bihar cadre.

It may be mentioned that Bhaskar Khulbe and Amarjeet Sinha were appointed as Advisors to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on a contractual basis initially for a period of two years on February 20 last year. Kulbe, however, will continue to stay put. Sinha was handling social sectors like education and rural development. Kulbe is looking into Infrastructure and whatever tasks assigned by the Principal Secretary to the PM, P K Mishra.

There is considerable speculation that Rajiv Gauba, a 1982 Jharkhand batch of the IAS, may move to PMO and Urban Development Secretary D S Mishra (1984 batch, UP cadre) may replace him. But many in the bureaucracy say that Gauba may get an extension as Cabinet secretaries get at least one extension in tenure.

There are reports that a major bureaucratic reshuffle may take place as many secretaries are retiring this month end. Home Secretary Anil Bhalla is also retiring this month and may get a key post as extension is unlikely.