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Monday Mirchi: RK is The best for CM

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In every office and organisation, the blue-eyed boy of the Boss is a wonder, if he is not revered. With Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao mentioning in glowing terms the name of Finance Secretary Ramakrishna Rao at least thrice during his three-hour speech in the Assembly, the ‘paisewallah babu’ seems to have attained a cult status among his peers. The CM remarked: “Finance Secretary Ramakrishna Rao, who is Special Chief Secretary, CS, former CS, & specially Ramakrishna Rao thank you. Ramakrishna Rao is a great person who managed to maintain Telangana fiscal prudence. Discipline was maintained, despite sanctions from the Centre. His services will always be remembered”. The corridors of the Assembly could sense the pervasive reverence for Ramakrishna Rao. When he walked through, even Ministers looked admiringly at him, while some bowed to him, perhaps in mock courtesy. Not to be outdone, the Special CS reciprocated.

‘Prince’ among bureaucrats
‘Like’ it or not (whether on social media platforms or elsewhere), when someone refers to ‘Prince’ in Telangana, the image of Minister K T Rama Rao pops up or flashes across the mental screen. But then there is also a bureaucrat who is often referred to as the ‘Prince’ by his peers because of his ‘pahonch’ (reach or clout). The whispers in the corridors of power are that the senior bureaucrat, with is gift of the gab and commanding presence, runs the show efficiently. Making him a cut above the rest, umpteen allegations against the bureaucrat were not even taken into consideration by the government. Even his recent trip abroad, along with Karimnagar leaders, had resulted in murmurs of protests such as ‘How is his work related to beautification?’. As reported in this column earlier, the beauty of the babu is that he continues to be the most sought-after bureaucrat by contractors not only in the irrigation sector but also the power sector.

When seniors look longingly at juniors
At least four 2017 batch IAS officers continue to be Additional Collectors, though five of their juniors have become Collectors. Mikkilineni Manu Chowdary, Rahul Sharma, Divakar TS and Kota Sreevatsa are 2017 batch officers, each of them holding the Additional Collector post. Four officers of 2018 batch and one officer of 2019 batch are Collectors. While K Varun Reddy, 2019 batch IAS officer, is Collector of Nirmal; the 2018 batch officers are Anudeep Durishetty, Koya Sree Harsha, Tejas Nandlal Pawar, and Bhorkhade Hemant Sahadeorao. Senior officials are discussing how strong the lobby of some of the junior officers is, considering that they get plum posts in Hyderabad or get posting of Collector way ahead of seniors.

Easy-going, happy-go-lucky Madam
Not even a month into getting posting as Principal Secretary to Government, YAT&C Department Youth Advancement, Tourism and Culture, Shailaja Ramaiyer has become a favourite among the new lot of people she has been working with. The 1997 IAS batch officer, known for her work ethic, seems to have won praise very quickly even from the Minister’s aide. A little bird told yours truly that ‘working with Shailaja is easy and very nice’ and went on to heap praises on her charisma. For newbies, Shailaja Ramaiyer was not been given posting for eight months. Once back at work, she has started proving what stuff she is made of.

Quick blessings
Retired IAS officer R Karikal Valaven was given extension for a period of one year after his superannuation on July 31, 2023. Soon after taking oath as the Special Chief Secretary to Government (Endowments), Revenue Department, the IAS officer has got another blessing of sorts. He will attend the TTD Trust Board meeting before the present TTD chairman YV Subba Reddy completes his tenure on August 7. The state government has appointed Tirupati MLA Bumana Karunakar Reddy as the new TTD chairman. He will take oath in a couple of days.
On August 8, TTD trustees’ tenure will also end and new trustees will be appointed. They will also take their oath. This means Karikal Valaven will take oath for the second time within a span of 10 days.

Babus caught between duty and politics
Bureaucrats in Telangana are once again caught between duty and politics in the long-standing crossfire between the Pragathi Bhavan and the Raj Bhavan. After a lull, again the Chief Minister and the Ministers have stopped visiting the Raj Bhavan. The officials are following suit. Three days back, Governor Tamilisai Soundarrajan held a roundtable conference on health issues in the state. However, no government official attended the meeting. For some time, knowing well the problems of bureaucrats the Governor chose not to invite them to meetings conducted by her at the Raj Bhavan. At the end of the day, AIS officials cannot afford to take sides.

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