The Prime Minister’s right-hand man and India’s top bureaucrat, KM Chandrasekhar, has had tough and trying times in his three-and-a-half-year tenure as Cabinet Secretary.

He is probably the first Cabinet Secretary ever to have realized and tackled so many problems. Bureaucracy Today treaded into his territory by trying to gauge what have been his priorities. Chandrasekhar gives importance to his unfinished tasks rather than his achievements.

A calm and grounded person, Chandrasekhar strongly feels for administrative reforms. In the interview, he has expressed his disappointment on spending so much time in holding departmental inquiries. If you go by his way of thinking a departmental probe should not take more than 48 hours.

If this process is introduced it will obviously set the alarms ticking for many shady officers since the Cabinet Secretary is very serious about bringing major reforms in this area of administration. Another area of concern for Chandrasekhar is about reforming the Performance Appraisal Report System. Rightly, administrative reform is one of the most neglected areas of Indian governance.

The Performance Evaluation and Management System evolved during Chandrasekhar’s tenure has brought most of the ministries under the scanner of the Cabinet Secretariat but still key ministries such as those of Finance, Home, Defence and External Affairs and the Prime Minister’s Office have yet to sign the Result Framework Documents. It will be interesting to see how the Cabinet Secretary manages to get these crucial ministries under the evaluation net. Any reform which can make bureaucrats more accountable and the system more transparent will be a welcome change.

On the negative side of the administration this time is the top level appointment in the Industrial Finance Corporation of India and the man who questionably paved the way for its MD and CEO is none other than Comptroller and Auditor General of India Vinod Rai whose evaluation of an alleged enormous loss to the exchequer in the 2G spectrum allotment has shaken the nation. But in this month’s Investigation Bureaucracy Today has gone into his official past and found that he was allegedly involved in placing Atul Kumar Rai as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer in the IFCI. Read as to how the CAG during his tenure as Secretary, Department of Financial Services under the Ministry of Finance, cleared the doc for Atul Rai to capture the prime posting in the IFCI. Bureaucracy Today exposes how Atul Rai, a former Indian Economic Service Officer, went on to become IFCI MD and CEO.

Suhaib Ilyasi is the Editor -in- chief of  Bureaucracy Today magazine.