Rajiv Mehrishi
Rajiv MehrishiGoI website

The Narendra Modi government on Monday appointed Rajiv Mehrishi as its home secretary replacing LC Goyal, who had sought voluntary retirement citing "personal reasons" 18 months before the end of his tenure. Later in the day, Goyal was appointed as chairman and managing director (CMD) of India Trade Promotion Organization (ITPO).

The government also promoted IAS officer RP Watal as the new finance secretary in place of Mehrishi.

"The Prime Minister has approved the appointment of Shri Rajiv Mehrishi, IAS (RJ:1978) Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance as Home Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs for a period of two years with effect from 31.08.2015. He succeeds Shri L.C. Goyal," a Press Information Bureau (PIB) statement reads.

"The Prime Minister has also approved the request of Shri L.C. Goyal, IAS (KL:1979) seeking voluntary retirement from Government service due to personal reasons with immediate effect," it adds.

Rajiv Mehrishi--an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of 1978 batch belonging to Rajasthan cadre--was serving as the finance secretary and was to retire on Monday.

The PIB issued another brief press release in the evening announcing Goyal's appointment as the ITPO chief. However, it did not mention any update on the officer's "voluntary retirement".

"The Prime Minister has approved the appointment of Shri L.C. Goyal, IAS (KL:1979) as Chairman and Managing Director, India Trade Promotion Organization," the PIB statement said.

In yet another statement issued in the evening, PIB said 1978 batch IAS officer of Andhra Pradesh cadre RP Watal would be the new finance secretary in place of Mehrishi.

"The Prime Minister has approved the designation of Shri R.P. Watal, IAS (AP:1978), the senior-most Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, as Finance Secretary," PIB said.

After Anil Goswami, LC Goyal--who is a 1979 batch IAS officer--thus becomes second home secretary during the NDA regime to leave midway. Goyal's tenure was to end in February 2017.

Amid reports of differences with the NDA regime as the reason behind his sudden exit, Goyal reportedly said that he was no upset over anything.

"I have just called it a day, not upset with govt over anything," the outgoing home secretary was quoted by the Economic Times as saying.

He also ruled out health as the cause. "I am hale and hearty. Health is not a reason for me to seek voluntary retirement. It is a personal decision," Goyal told ET.

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