New Delhi - It was a friend's call through which Yudhvir Singh Malik got to know about his transfer from food safety regulator FSSAI, where he served as CEO for just about a year but brought it into limelight with the Maggi ban.
Malik, who took charge of his new posting as Additional Secretary at NITI Aayog on Thursday, refused to get into the "reasons" for his sudden transfer, but sources said he was not in the know until the night of September 22 -- the date on which the orders were issued.
When contacted, Malik told PTI: "As a civil servant, I should not get into the reasons of my transfer. As soon as I got orders from the government, I moved on to join the new assignment given to me."
Sources in the Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) said everyone in the organisation was in dark about Malik's transfer.
"... none of us were aware about this, in fact even Malik himself had no idea. He attended the office on September 22 as any other day," a source said.
"Malik himself came to know about his transfer when one of his friends, a bureaucrat, called him late in the night on September 22 to ask why he was being transferred," the source added.
Malik, a 1983 batch IAS officer of Haryana cadre known for his upright attitude, was not the favorite of the industry.
He had also handled the critical issue of land acquisition in Haryana.
At FSSAI, after the Maggi ban, Malik faced criticism from both, government and the industry.
Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal had said that the food regulator has created an environment of "fear" in the industry.
The minister also said that actions taken by the FSSAI were discouraging innovations in the food processing sector.
Despite all the criticism, FSSAI under Malik continued to remain vigilant regarding food safety issues and keep on issuing advisories.
During his tenure, the regulator issued advisories for neutraceuticals, issued guidelines to regulate salt, sugar and fat in food products sold or served at eating joints.
It was during his tenure only that regulator started working on framing the standards for alcohol products including whiskey, among others.
Updated Date: Sep 25, 2015 10:48 AM