Hours After Retirement, Bihar Chief Secretary Made Nitish Kumar’s Advisor With Minister Rank

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Patna: The Bihar government appointed Anjani Kumar Singh as an adviser to Prime Minister Nitish Kumar hours after his retirement as the state’s chief secretary on Friday.

Singh will serve as Advisor on Policy and Program Implementation and will enjoy the status of a minister of state, said a government notification. Singh now has the right to six staff members, government bungalows and cars for personal use.

“His responsibilities would include extending the necessary advice and cooperation to the prime minister for effective and results-oriented implementation of government programs and the achievement of objectives within the stipulated time period,” the notification said.

An IAS officer from 1981 lots Singh, considered a close associate of Nitish Kumar, was due to retire in February this year, but was granted a three-month extension.

Singh had previously served as the Chief Secretary of the CM, after which he was elevated to the position of Chief Secretary by the government of Jitan Ram Manjhi, ignoring the seniority of eight other IAS officers in the state cadre.

After the retirement of Singh, the IAS official of 1984, Deepak Kumar, assumed the position of new secretary in chief.

The Nitish Kumar government had made a similar appointment in 2015 when survey strategist Prashant Kishor was appointed adviser and was granted the rank of cabinet minister. Kishor was widely credited with the victory of the BJP in the 2014 general election and the JD (U) -RJD-Congress Mahagathbandhan in the 2015 Assembly elections. The uproar of the opposition, however, prompted Kishor to do a silent exit.