A day after he was transferred to the power ministry, former finance secretary Subhash Garg, a 1983 batch Rajasthan cadre IAS officer, applied for voluntary retirement with effect from October end. He will take charge as power secretary on Friday.
“Handed over charge of Economic Affairs today. Learnt so much in the finance ministry and Economic Affairs Department. Will take charge in power ministry tomorrow. Have also applied for Voluntary Retirement from the IAS with effect from October 31,” Garg said in a Twitter message on Thursday, breaking his silence ever since the reshuffle was announced a day earlier.
Atanu Chakraborty, a 1985 batch Gujarat cadre IAS, has replaced Garg in the economic affairs department. Chakraborty was secretary in the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (Dipam).
Garg came to North Block office in the finance ministry in the morning and left after noon. He later told reporters that he was serving a three-month notice period. A service member can retire before turning 60 after giving three months’ notice to the government, after completing 20 years of service.
In about two decades, Garg is the first secretary in the finance ministry to seek VRS after being moved to another ministry. If the voluntary retirement application is accepted, he will leave service more than a year before his scheduled superannuation on October 31, 2020.
In November 2000, E A S Sarma, who was Economic Affairs Secretary in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, was moved to the coal ministry. Instead of taking up that post, he retired voluntarily, with a year and two months to go for his superannuation. Among others to be shifted out of the North Block, Piyush Mankad, who was finance secretary in the Vajpayee government, was appointed secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP). Mankad served in that post and later also as additional director general in the Asian Development Bank (ADB). More recently, Arvind Mayaram, who was designated finance secretary during the Manmohan Singh government in April 2014, was transferred soon after the Narendra Modi government took charge. He was first shunted to the Tourism Ministry and then to Minority Affairs, where he served for a year before retiring.