Subhash Chandra Garg seeks voluntary retirement from govt service after being shunted out of Finance Ministry

In a surprise move, economic affairs secretary and finance secretary Subhash Chandra Garg has reportedly sought voluntary retirement from government service after the Narendra Modi government's major bureaucratic reshuffle on 24 July, said a media report.

Garg, was the senior-most bureaucrat in the Finance Ministry, in charge of the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), and was designated the finance secretary. The Power Ministry is considered to be of a lower profile than the Ministry of Finance.

In the first bureaucratic rejig in its second term, the Modi government transferred Garg to the Power Ministry and appointed Atanu Chakraborty as the new economic affairs secretary, according to an official notification of the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.

Chakraborty, who is a 1985 batch Gujarat cadre IAS officer, is the outgoing secretary of Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM).

Garg's decision to seek voluntary retirement scheme (VRS) comes in the wake of the bureaucratic reshuffle in which he has been shunted to the Power Ministry as secretary, said a report in CNBC-TV18.

Sources said Garg came to his office in the North Block—the seat of Finance Ministry—in the morning, but left afternoon, a PTI report said.

 Subhash Chandra Garg seeks voluntary retirement from govt service after being shunted out of Finance Ministry

File image of Subhash Chandra Garg. Image courtesy - Twitter

It was not immediately clear when Garg submitted his voluntary retirement scheme (VRS) application to the government. It was also not known if the government would accept the application. If he hadn't applied for VRS, he would have retired from government service at the end of October 2020 on attaining of 60 years of age. Garg did not answer phone calls seeking his comments.

The Finance Ministry, which is yet to confirm Garg’s offer to step down, said the ministry was not involved in the appointment process, reported Mint.

Garg, 58, has been shifted as the new power secretary replacing Ajay Kumar Bhalla, who has been appointed as the officer on special duty (OSD) in the home ministry. Bhalla will take over as the new home secretary when the current home secretary, Rajiv Gauba, retires on 31 August, said the report.

Interestingly, Garg was appointed as the finance secretary in March this year and he has been shifted out of the Finance Ministry hardly a month after the country's first full-time Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, presented her maiden Union Budget on 5 July.

Garg is a 1983 batch IAS officer of the Rajasthan cadre and has been working as the secretary in Department of Economic Affairs since June 2017.

Garg came to the Centre in 2014 and was appointed executive director in the World Bank where he stayed till 2017, when he was appointed DEA secretary in June 2017.

In March 2019, he was elevated as the finance secretary following the retirement of A N Jha.

The government, on Wednesday, named new secretaries after the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet approved their names.

As per convention, the senior-most among the 5 secretaries in the Ministry of Finance is designated as the Finance Secretary.

The secretaries in the Finance Ministry are Financial Services Secretary Rajiv Kumar (1984-batch, Jharkhand cadre), Revenue Secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey (1984-batch Bihar cadre), DEA Secretary Atanu Chakraborty (1985-batch, Gujarat cadre), Expenditure Secretary G C Murmu (1985-batch, Gujarat cadre) and DIPAM Secretary Anil Kumar Khachi (1986-batch, Himachal Pradesh cadre).

Anil Kumar Khachi of the Himachal Pradesh cadre has been appointed as DIPAM secretary, stated the official notification of the ministry.

With PTI  inputs

Updated Date: Jul 25, 2019 16:08:29 IST