From Power Secretary to the most powerful bureaucrat

Our Bureau | | | Updated on: Jan 23, 2018


The man who handled three key Ministries in the 10 years of the UPA government will now head the bureaucracy in the Narendra Modi Government.

As Cabinet Secretary, Pradeep Kumar Sinha, a 1977 batch Indian Administrative Service officer of the Uttar Pradesh cadre, will be the most powerful bureaucrat in the Centre, reporting directly to the Prime Minister. Sinha, considered an upright officer, began his third stint of central deputation as Joint Secretary in the Oil Ministry on November 11, 2004, few months after the Manmohan Singh-led government took charge. He had an over seven-year stint in the Oil Ministry, where he was promoted as Additional Secretary and later as Special Secretary. In 2012, he was appointed Shipping Secretary and a year later he became the Power Secretary. Sinha, who takes charge as the 31st Cabinet Secretary, has always maintained low profile. It was under his stint in the Power Ministry that the first year of the Modi government saw record 22,566 MW capacity addition, besides highest ever increase in transmission line capacity – 22,100 circuit kilometres and highest ever increase in sub-station capacity – 66,554 MVA. Apart from Sinha, four others names — Madhav Lal (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Secretary), Alok Rawat (Personal, Public Grievances & Pension Secretary) and Rajiv Mehrishi (Finance Secretary) — were doing the rounds for the post. Sinha’s continuous long deputation and experience in key Ministries helped him get the post, it is said. Sinha’s appointment comes with a fixed two-year tenure. This means, even if he attains retirement age, he will continue to serve and can even get an extension. His predecessor Ajit Seth served for four years with three extensions.

Published on May 29, 2015
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