Rajiv Mehrishi is new economic affairs secy; Mayaram moved to tourism ministry

Rajasthan chief secretary Rajiv Mehrishi has been named economic affairs secretary replacing Arvind Mayaram, who was both finance secretary and secretary, department of economic affairs, in the second significant shuffle of tops bureaucrats in the country by the new government which took over in May this year.

Mayaram, who was appointed as finance secretary in April this year, was already serving as economic affairs secretary since 2012. He now moves to a less powerful post in the pecking order as secretary to the tourism department. He would take over from Parvez Dewan, on his retirement on October 31.

Both Mehrishi and Mayaram are 1978 batch Rajasthan cadre IAS officers.

Mehrishi was named chief secretary in Rajasthan in December 2013. Prior to that, he was secretary to government of India for overseas Indian affairs.

He has also been a special secretary to government in the department of agricultural research & education, ministry of agriculture and has held many other roles in various sectors.

Mayaram becomes the second senior bureaucrat to be shifted from the finance ministry after revenue secretary Rajiv Takru. Takru, who was appointed revenue secretary in April, was moved out in the run up to the first mid-term union budget presented by the new government.

Fertiliser secretary Shaktikanta Das was named new revenue secretary in June.

The ministry of finance has five departments and separate secretaries for different units, including economic affairs, expenditure, revenue, financial services and disinvestment.

Currently Ratan P Watal and Gurdial Singh Sandhu are expenditure secretary and financial services secretary, respectively. The disinvestment department, which was led by three joint secretaries till September, recently got Aradhana Johri as the new secretary.

Notably, the government, while naming Mehrishi to the new role has not named him as a finance secretary, an additional designation which is sported by whoever is senior-most among the five secretaries in the finance ministry.

The latest movement at the finance ministry comes along with a string of other shuffles of bureaucrats in various departments.

The government has also created a post of officer on special duty in the ministry of coal in the rank and pay of secretary with immediate effect with the direction that the ministry may obtain approval of the union cabinet later.

Anil Swarup, additional secretary, secretariat for CCI, cabinet secretariat, has been named officer on special duty. He would take over in the ministry after SK Srivastava retires later this month. This appointment comes at a time when the coal sector has been under fire over coal mines allocations in the past.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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