MP Minister Singhar withholds file of transfer board decision amid Forest Minister-ACS Controversy

Bhopal, November 20, 2019 (Muslim Saleem): The dispute between Forest Minister Umang Singhar and Additional Chief Secretary Forest AP Srivastava has intensified: The latest case relates to the transfer board meeting held for the posting of three senior IFS officers. In the meeting of the transfer board made for posting of All India Service Officers on October 22, it was decided that Rajesh Shrivastava, a 1984 batch, was given the Chief Wildlife Warden of MP and SP Rayal of the same batch as Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) Research And Development and AB Gupta of 1986 batch to be posted PCCF Production.
Since the board is headed by the Chief Secretary, the file was immediately sent to Forest Minister Umang Singhar for approval, but the posting of the file is still with him without approval. It is being told that due to the ongoing pullout from AP Srivastava, the minister did not approve it, because the board’s proposal was made by Additional Chief Secretary Shrivastava.
There is a lot of resentment among the officers regarding this attitude of the minister. Ministry sources also say that negotiations between Singhar and ACS Srivastava have been closed for the past one and a half months. Here, the post of Chief Wildlife Warden has been vacant for more than two months due to the recommendation of the transfer board of Minister Singhar. Sources say that the Forest Minister is slightly unhappy with Rajesh Srivastava. Rajesh Srivastava, who was MD of Small Forest Produce Association, was removed earlier on his recommendation. Additional Chief Secretary of the department Shrivastava says that this file is not in his office. An attempt was made to talk to the minister about this, but could not be reached.
 Temporary posts approved after three weeks
Temporary posts were approved by the Forest Minister after three weeks for promotion to the PCCF post of Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (APCCF Vigilance) Abhay Patil of 1986 batch and APCCF Coordinator Anil Srivastava of the same batch. Earlier, the Central Government had approved two temporary posts of PCCF for two years. Their duration was completed in October. Earlier, it was proposed by the department that these temporary posts should be continued continuously till further permanent posts become vacant. Temporary posts can be accommodated in case permanent posts become vacant. If this happens, Patil and Anil Srivastava will be promoted. Earlier it was not agreed upon, but later the Additional Chief Secretary AP Srivastava sent the proposal again. Three weeks later, the minister approved the matter. Now further processing will be done soon.
Controversies and issues associated with Singhar

  1. The Forest Minister himself distributed the work of the officers of the office of Additional Chief Secretary. AP Srivastava, disagreeing with this, sent the file with Tip to the Chief Secretary. The matter is still pending with the Chief Minister. Till then the functioning is being affected.
  2. Union deputation of IFS officer JS Chauhan was not approved by Forest Minister Singhar. AP Srivastava sent the file afresh to the Chief Secretary and wrote that Chauhan should be sent on deputation. When the file went up to the Chief Minister, he approved.
  3. Wrote Forest Minister for departmental inquiry of two top IFS officers, whose information was given by the department at a high level. This case was also later stayed.
  4. The Forest Minister took the initiative to create 10 new centuries. Others protested along with Chhindwara MLAs. This matter is currently in trouble because the state government does not have a budget.
  5. The Forest Minister wrote a note sheet to hand over the plantation investigation to the EOW, but the issue is still in process.
    Ministers either change or approve decisions
    Officers of the General Administration Department say the transfer board is an independent body. It is decided by other officers along with the Additional Chief Secretary of the concerned department with the presence of CS. The decision of the board is sent to the minister for approval. The final decisions are taken by the CM. The Minister has the right to accept or change the decision of the Board. In the senior IFS case, the file has been with the Forest Minister since 22 October.