Chief Secretary Ravi Kumar, who retires in May, could set an administrative record by quitting his post if, as is likely, he is appointed chairman of Karnataka’s energy regulator
Karnataka Chief Secretary P Ravi Kumar is all set to create an administrative record of sorts by getting the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) chairman’s post a full three months ahead of his retirement. In this very likely scenario. Ravi Kumar will necessarily have to quit as the state’s top bureaucrat, as a condition for selection to the KERC top post is that the selected candidate should not hold any other post in the government.
Though the selection committee headed by Justice BA Patil is yet to finalise a date to identify a suitable candidate as chairman of KERC, Ravi Kumar is being seen as a front-runner for the post as he will have the backing of the state government.
Apart from Chief Secretary Ravi Kumar, some half-a-dozen IAS officers have applied for the prestigious post, including retired additional chief secretary Mahendra Jain, Amitha Prasad and Yogendra Tripathi.
Odds in CS’s favour
Sources confirmed to TheBengaluruLive that the selection of the KERC chairman would be done from the administrative side as the acting chairman and member HM Manjunatha is from the legal side and another member, MD Ravi, is from the finance side.
Ravi Kumar has also served in the energy sector as did another KERC contender Mahendra Jain, who retired from the service in March 2021. The other contenders, Amitha Prasad and Yogendra Tripathi, have served in New Delhi prior to their retirements in January 2022.
Ravi Kumar will be retiring as Chief Secretary in May 2022. He has already applied for the KERC chairman’s post but the selection committee is yet to announce an interview date.
There are also chances that Ravi Kumar may complete his tenure in May this year and be selected for the KERC top post after retirement. But if the selection committee decides to take an early call on appointing a KERC chairman, Ravi Kumar may end up resigning as Chief Secretary and consequently getting a full five-year term as KERC chairman. On the other hand, the ruling BJP’s decision to choose an outside for the post cannot either be ruled out.
Earlier KERC bosses
The KERC top post has been lying vacant since January 3 this year after the retirement of IAS officer Shambu Dayal Meena. Earlier, MK Shankarlinge Gowda held the post from June 8, 2015 to December 19, 2018.
Retired IAS officer Philipose Mathai was the first KERC chairman and served from November 15, 1999 to November 14, 2004. Another retired IAS officer, KP Pandey, served from December 15, 2004 to December 15, 2009, and MR Sreenivasa Murthy from March 24, 2010 to March 3, 2015.