In a major bureaucratic reshuffle, the Modi-led BJP government has shifted the current Finance Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg to the Power Ministry. Atanu Chakraborty, who is the current Secretary for Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) will be the next Secretary of Department of Economic Affairs, a coveted position in the finance ministry.
Chakraborty will replace Subhash Chandra Garg. The changes would come into effect immediately.
Garg will replace Ajay Kumar Bhalla as the Power Secretary. Bhalla has been appointed as the Officer on Special Duty (OSD) in the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The secretaries are the top bureaucrats and are placed next to ministers in the hierarchy.
Chakraborty is now the divestment department secretary and was overseeing a series of privatisation efforts of the government, including the sale of Air India.
One of Chakraborty's biggest challenges in his new post will be to launch India's first sovereign overseas bond this year, expected to worth about $10 billion. The move has been criticised by some prominent economists.
Garg was on the six-member panel deciding on the transfer of "excess reserves" from the Reserve Bank of India, or central bank. Sources said Garg had opposed the panel's move to transfer a smaller amount to the central government.
However, this is not the first time the Narendra Modi-led NDA government has made such major changes. Back in 2014, after the Modi-led government took charge for the first time, the government transferred the then Finance Secretary Arvind Mayaram to the tourism department.
(Inputs from agencies)