Gulam Rasool Sufi takes over as J-K's first CIC

Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir got its first Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) when Gulam Rasool Sufi took the oath of office on Monday.

60-year-old Sufi, currently working as Chief Income Tax Commissioner (Amritsar circle), was administered the oath by Governor NN Vohra at a function at the Raj Bhavan.

A high-level three-member panel headed by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah recommended Sufi's name for the post on January 27. PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti and Deputy Chief Minister Tara Chand were the other members of the committee.

His formal appointment came on February 6. The CIC is appointed for a period of five years.

Vohra gave his approval after the state government re-submitted the file with clearance report from Central Vigilance Commission (CVC). He had earlier returned the file to the government as it did not carry the mandatory CVC clearance.

Sufi, a 1977 batch Indian Revenue Services (IRS) officer, did his MA in political science from AMU in 1975, M Phil from JNU in 1977 and MBA from Hull University, UK in 1998.

Born in Srinagar on April 13, 1951, he became the Chief Income Tax Commissioner in 2010.

The Right to Information (RTI) Act was enacted in Jammu and Kashmir in 2004. While the State Information Commission is yet to begin work, the government has spent nearly Rs 8.3 million on the offices and other infrastructure in the past one year.

Two information commissioners are, however, yet to named.

Former CIC of India Wajahat Habibullah was named in 2009 to head the state's RTI watchdog. But he did not join.