New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday questioned the Uttar Pradesh government for appointing Shashank Shekhar Singh, a non-IAS officer, as state Cabinet Secretary and asked him to submit counter-affidavit within 10 days.

Hearing a PIL challenging Singh’s appointment on the ground that he does not belong to IAS cadre, a bench comprising Justice BS Chauhan and TS Thakur raised questions on the rules and regulations followed for the posting.

The bench said that it is understandable why technology expert like Sam Pitroda who has done extraordinary work in his field is appointed as advisor, but proper procedure has to be followed for the post of Cabinet Secretary.

More so, the Central establishment also filed an affidavit opposing Singh’s appointment as Cabinet Secretary, stating that the Centre is the governing body for Cadre Controlling Authority of senior bureaucrats.

However, the UP Government claimed that Shashank Shekher has been appointed as per the provision mentioned in Rules of Business and Uttar Pradesh Secretariat Instructions.

Shashank Shekhar is non-IAS officer and a pilot. After the formation of the BSP government in the state in May 2007, Shashank was elevated to the post of Cabinet Secretary. Soon, an order was issued by the BSP government putting the Cabinet Secretary at par with the state’s chief secretary, the senior-most bureaucrat in the state.

JPN/Bureau