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1-year extension for IB, RAW bosses; J&K chief secretary moved to Delhi | India News


NEW DELHI: The government announced on Thursday a one-year extension for Office of Intelligence Director Arvinda Kumar and RAW chief Samant Kumar Goel, ushering in continuity at the helm of their intelligence apparatus. The two-year fixed term for both officials was supposed to end on June 30, 2021, but now runs until June 30, 2022.
In another important move, the government replaced Jammu & Kashmir’s chief secretary BVR Subrahmanyam with Arun Kumar Mehta, currently the finance commissioner in J & K’s finance department. Subrahmanyam, the IAS officer from the Chhattisgarh cadre who is believed to have been personally chosen by the prime minister three years ago to head the bureaucracy at J&K, had seen the old state through crucial phases such as the president’s rule, repeal of Article 370 and its reorganization in the territory of the Union. . He was appointed on Thursday as OSD in the commerce department here and will take over as commerce secretary following the retirement of incumbent Anup Wadhawan on June 30, 2021.
The extension for Kumar, an IPS officer from the 1984 group of the Assam-Meghalaya cadre, and Goel, an IPS officer from the Punjab cadre of the same group, was granted in relaxation of FR 56 (J) and Rule 16 ( 1A) from All India Services. (Retirement Death Benefits Act), 1958. Both officers enjoy a good relationship with the NSA Ajit Doval. While the line of succession at IB is not greatly affected by Kumar’s extended term, a couple of senior officials at RAW will retire before Goel’s extended term ends.
The one-year extension for Kumar and Goel is particularly interesting as it comes just after senior IPS officials such as Rakesh Asthana and YC Modi were out of the running for the position of CBI director when the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India NV Ramana, citing a March 2019 Supreme Court ruling, insisted on considering only officials with a minimum of six months of service remaining. The high-powered selection committee made up of the Prime Minister, the CJI and the leader of Congress in Lok Sabha finally authorized a panel of three high-ranking officers with more than six months of service remaining. Subodh Kumar Jaiswal, one of the 3 officers on the panel, has been appointed Director of CBI.
There was some speculation about the ramifications of the six-month rule applied in the election of the CBI director, for other DG-level appointments at the Center, particularly those with fixed terms as head of DIB and RAW. However, official sources had told TOI that the 2019 SC ruling referred only to state DGP appointments.
By the way, Thursday’s decision on Kumar and Goel is simply a case of extension and not new appointments.
In early 2018, the government had granted a six-month extension to then-DIB Rajiv Jain and RAW chief Anil Dhasmana, but that was related to the upcoming Lok Sabha poll in April-May 2019.

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