A file photo of new Punjab Chief Secretary Anirudh Tewari. | Photo by special arrangement
A file photo of new Punjab Chief Secretary Anirudh Tewari. | Photo by special arrangement
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Chandigarh: New Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi’s government Thursday named 1990-batch IAS officer Anirudh Tewari as the state’s chief secretary. 

Tewari, who is currently the additional chief secretary and financial commissioner, development, will replace Vini Mahajan.

Tewari has superseded five officers, including the outgoing chief secretary, who is of the 1987 batch. All five officers have been made “special chief secretaries” to the Punjab government, according to a government order issued Thursday.

The reshuffle among the top brass in the state comes in wake of the changes being made by the new chief minister.

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Who is Tewari?

Anirudh Tewari, who is considered among the brightest officers in the state, has been in several key positions in Punjab over the years. He has been in top position not just under the ruling Congress government, but also the previous Shiromani Akali Dal dispensation.

Tewari was the principal secretary, finance, under former finance minister Manpreet Badal, who is considered to be the mentor of the new CM. 

Under the previous Akali Dal government, former deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had chosen Tewari as chief executive of the Punjab Bureau of Investment Promotion, Badal’s pet project to bring in fresh investment.  

Tewari also had a long stint as principal secretary in the department of industries and commerce, and a brief tenure in the department of non-conventional energy resources.

According to his executive record sheet, on his central deputation, Tewari served as a director in the Department of Economic Affairs, and as deputy secretary in the Department of Revenue, Union Ministry of Finance. He was also the country coordinator for the International Fund for Agriculture development (IFAD). 

Tewari is an electronics engineer from the Thapar Institute of Engineering and Technology, Patiala. The 54-year-old also holds a Masters in Economics from Panjab University, Chandigarh, and another Masters degree in International Development Policy (External Affairs) from Duke University, US.

Tewari will continue to hold the departments he is heading currently.

The bureaucratic reshuffle 

Due to Tewari’s elevation, the state has had to make five officers special chief secretaries, including outgoing chief secretary Vini Mahajan, who was chosen by former CM Captain Amarinder Singh.

Mahajan’s husband Dinkar Gupta is currently the Punjab Director General of Police. He is also expected to be shifted.

Ravneet Kaur (1988 batch), Sanjay Kumar (1988), V.K. Janjua (1989) and Kirpa Shankar Saroj (1989) are the other new special chief secretaries. 

As part of the ongoing reshuffle, CM Charanjit Singh Channi has appointed 1995-batch IAS officer Hussan Lal as his principal secretary, replacing Suresh Kumar who had resigned following Amarinder Singh’s ouster last week.

On the law and order side, the CM has already swapped Commissioners of Police of Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Amritsar. Naunihal Singh is now CP Jalandhar, Dr Sukhchain Singh Gill is CP Amritsar and Gurpreet Singh Bhullar is CP Ludhiana.

(Edited by Amit Upadhyaya)

Also read: Farmers’ protest fights for apolitical image as leader is accused of Akali bias ahead of polls


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