The two-year service extension granted to Union power secretary RV Shahi has sent ripples in the bureaucracy. For, here is a non-service technocrat who, having crossed the 60-year mark, has nothing less than a two-year extension. The case was initially made for a one-year extension. This was later upped to two years. Serving bureaucrats agree the issue is not of merit. Supported by his minister PM Sayeed, Mr Shahi made a presentation to the Prime Minister early last month, demonstrating that power sector reforms had indeed taken off, catalysed by the several measures undertaken by the ministry. According to a study done by Power Finance Corporation, during 2001-02, the gap between the average cost of supply of power and the average revenue realised by the state electricity boards was 110 paise a kwh. During 2002-03, this gap is estimated to have reduced to 63 paise a kwh! The states loss is Mr Shahis gain!
It isnt the kind of press conference anybody holding a public office would like to have. More so when they are about to complete their tenure. Outgoing National Commission for Women chairperson Purnima Advani recently had to face some embarrassing moments at a press meet where she was presenting a report. A NCW member chose to express her displeasure at the manner of Ms Advanis functioning by standing up and saying the report had not been shown to other members. Incidentally, there are reports of intense lobbying for her successor.