Javed Usmani to become UPs first Muslim chief secretary
By Rizwan Khatik - Tue Mar 20, 11:57 am
Sources said the senior IAS officer, who was joint secretary in Manmohan Singh’s PMO, is likely to be picked to head the huge babudom of UP. Usmani is on a sabbatical in the US after his stint in World Bank ended in late 2010. He has also worked in the PMO under Atal Bihari Vajpayeeand I K Gujral.
While newly-appointed chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has continued with Anoop Misra who was appointed chief secretary by predecessorMayawati, he is likely to be shifted out soon.
Usmani’s joining the top post would mark a seminal moment in the state’s history as the only Muslim to adorn the chair after independence was Mahmood Butt, who was chief secretary in 1975-76.
While the senior officer qualifies for the post by sheer dint of his record, being the batch topper with a rich experience in administration, his candidature ties with SP’s stress on Muslim constituency. The Samajwadis benefitted from the community’s return to its fold after deserting it in two consecutive elections. SP too went out of the way to woo the community. Its promise of 18% reservation for Muslims is a case in point, even if pushed down the reservation road by Congress campaign.