New Delhi: The government today said that
Brijeshwar Singh will continue as the Chairman of the National
Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for another three months on
a contract basis.
Singh, a 1975 batch Tamil Nadu cadre Indian
Administrative Service (IAS) officer, was slated to retire
today. However, his tenure at the helm of the road-building
body has now been extended for another three months, as a new
chairman has not been appointed as yet.
"The Appointment Committee of the Cabinet has approved
the re-employment of Singh as Chairman, NHAI, on a contract
basis for a period of three months," an official statement
The statement said Singh will have to vacate the post in
case a regular appointment is made before his extended tenure
expires on November 30.
The government has initiated the selection process for
the NHAI Chairman twice, but has met with little success.
Sources said the decision to re-employ Singh, who had
taken over as NHAI Chairman nearly a year-and-a-half back, was
taken after the panel could not get satisfactory applications.
It is possible that the government may now constitute the
appointment panel afresh. However, officials refused to
comment on such a possibility.
Singh and former Road Transport and Highways Secretary
Brahm Dutt have applied for the post twice.
The government had advertised for the post with a five-
year term for the second time in June this year. The initial
appointment committee was scrapped after a controversy erupted
over former Road Secretary Dutt applying for the coveted post,
even though he was a member of the selection committee.
Those who had applied for a second time include
Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) chief R S Gujral,
who was recently appointed as Roads Secretary; former NHAI
member K S Money; Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME)
Secretary Dinesh Rai, who retired today; former Urban
Development Secretary M Ramachandran and Civil Aviation
Secretary M Madhavan Nambiar, as per sources.
In its circular, the government has mentioned that the
eligibility criteria for the post includes at least 15 years
of experience in the field of finance and financial
management, besides holding the post of Secretary to the
government of India or its equivalent.