In a massive administrative reshuffle in Bihar, senior IAS officer Amir Subhani became the new chief secretary. Considered a close and trusted aide of chief minister Nitish Kumar, Subhani is the only Muslim civil servant serving as chief secretary right now. The appointment is being seen as a “political message” to the BJP, the alliance partner of theJD(U) in the state. The BJP, however, said the chief minister had the right to choose his chief secretary.
Senior JD(U) leaders said the CM would never “divide” on the basis of caste and religion, according to a report published by ThePrint. “Amir Subhani ji is one the finest officers the state has, and he has seniority and experience on his side. However, this is a great decision by our leader Nitish Kumar ji and is symbolic too,” said JD(U) general secretary KC Tyagi, as per the report.
The report further quoted him, “It is a clear message for all to realise that Nitish Kumar will never discriminate on the lines of religion and caste, adding, “Subhani is Bihar’s first Muslim chief secretary and is the only one in any NDA-ruled state.”
Subhani, the 1987-batch IAS topper, was appointed chief secretary on December 30, according to a government notification and took charge on Saturday. He was the state’s development commissioner before his elevation, and will retire in April 2024. In such a situation, his tenure is currently more than 2 years.
The notification was issued by the general administration department. He will replace Tripurari Sharan, who will retire on December 31.
Subhani is originally from Siwan district, but has worked in many districts of Bihar besides being the district magistrate on many important posts. He has earlier worked in key bureaucratic positions, including as the state’s home secretary for the 10 years.
Discussions were already on to make Subhani the next chief secretary. There was also a discussion about whether the officer, who is reportedly not favoured by the BJP , will be able to become the chief Secretary.
According to a report published by The New Indian Express, a BJP leader, on condition of anonymity, said Nitish had “shown love for the minority community” by appointing Subhani chief secretary, the top post in state bureaucracy. “Though Nitish wanted Subhani as chief secretary earlier, he could not do it because of ‘pressure’ and ‘objections’,” said the BJP leader, as per the report.
(With PTI inputs)