Haryana worst in shuffling IAS

Pankaj Sharma/Zee Research Group

Haryana government which is under fire over the transfer of senior IAS officer Ashok Khemka in the wake of Robert Vadra land row now has a bigger reason to worry about. In the last decade, the state has earned the dubious distinction of transferring bureaucrats more abruptly than any other state. Moreover, the national average rate of babus transferred during 2001 to 2011 has been calculated at 4.19 implying that on an average an IAS officer gets transferred at least four times in his career.

A Zee Research Group (ZRG) analysis of candidates shortlisted for Indian Administrative Service (IAS) from all cadres during the same period found that transfer of babus is a regular feature of Indian bureaucracy. While Haryana has got the dubious tag of transferring bureaucrats at the highest average rate of 7.46, Chhattisgarh and Kerala followed at 6.17 and 5.19 respectively.

West Bengal, Punjab and Karnataka too have frequently transferred bureaucrats during the same period. While West Bengal shifted bureaucrats at the average rate of 5.33, Punjab and Karnataka follow at the rate of 4.92 and 4.76 respectively.

For the analysis, bio-data of 1240 shortlisted bureaucrats in last decade have been reviewed by ZRG. The national average rate of transfer has been arrived at by calculating the number of transfers of all 1240 officers. Similarly, ZRG arrived at the average rate of individual cadre by analyzing the transfer of officers belonging to them.

Similarly, a recent research done by Anandi Mani of University of Warwick and Lakshmi Iyer of Harvard Business School found that IAS officers spend on average only 16 months in any specific post in India. Moreover, they have a 53 per cent probability of being appointed to a new position in a given year. The research was analyzed looking at data on the careers of 2,800 officers in the IAS over the period 1980 to 2004.

The ZRG analysis has found one interesting trend that hilly states appeared to be least interested in changing babus. During the period under review, Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) and Uttaranchal have registered the least transfer rate of IAS officers at 2.33 each. Sikkim and Maharashtra have also ranked poor with the low transfer rate of 2.37 and 2.84 respectively.

As per the analysis, Shahla Nigar a 2001-batch Chattisgarh cadre officer and Mohammed Shayin a 2002-batch Haryana cadre officer have equally faced maximum 23 transfers in last 10 years. Following them, Satyaprakash T L (2002-batch) and Pankaj Yadav (2001-batch) of Haryana cadre have witnessed 22 and 20 transfers respectively.

Haryana’s neighbour state, Punjab has also shuffled Gurkirat Kirpal Singh (2001-batch) and Kavita Singh (2004-batch) 16 and 15 times respectively.

However, among 1240 bureaucrats shortlisted in last decade, there are 253 bureaucrats who have been working on the same position. In this category, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra take the lead with 44 and 29 such officers respectively. Similarly, 23 bureaucrats belong to Andhra Pradesh and 20 J&K cadre have worked on the same position from years.

On the other hand, there is only officer each from Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala who have been continuously working on the same position without facing any transfer.