SHILLONG, Jan 2 - New Meghalaya Chief Secretary MS Rao, whose appointment has been embroiled in a controversy, assumed charge today and met several high-ranking officials. Soon after Rao reached his office this afternoon, several senior officials, including DGP R Chandranathan, called on him and greeted him.
The Chief Secretary was among a few senior officials present at the Secretariat as government offices reopened today after vacation. Rao’s appointment has been challenged by Additional Chief Secretary Hector Marwein, who is currently the most senior IAS officer in the State.
Rao is an IAS officer of the 1987 batch of the Assam-Meghalaya cadre, while Marwein is a 1985-batch IAS officer of the same cadre and therefore, two years senior to Rao.
Marwein, in his petition to the Government, said he may be given “rightfully” the post of Chief Secretary as he is entitled to it as “per seniority and past precedent in the State”.
Citing his unblemished record of 34 years of service, Marwein said the supersession would set an “unhealthy precedent in this State as it will allow for unhealthy competition between officers for securing the highest post”.
Meanwhile, Marwein petitioned the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), Guwahati, for redress of his grievances. The CAT will take up the matter on February 3.
Several NGOs have petitioned the Government, demanding Marwein’s appointment as the Chief Secretary.
Representatives of some NGOs said that they would meet on Friday to chalk out their strategy on the issue.
The NGOs will also discuss their demand for implementation of the inner line permit system in the State.