Job regularisation: Tainted IAS officer in trouble again

Bhubaneswar: Senior IAS officer and former Collector of Bolangir district Debraj Mishra who is currently lodged in jail in connection with a recruitment scam, is once again in trouble after Centre sought a report from State government about Mishra’s role in the regularisation of some teaching staff in Utkal University.

Under direction from the Centre, the Odisha General Administration (GA) department has sought clarification from the Higher Education department on the matter. It was alleged that in 2009, during deputy secretary to Governor, Mishra, misusing his power had recommended the then vice-chancellor of the varsity to regularise jobs of 16 consolidated teachers.

In its letter, dated 28th December 2015, the GA department has asked the principal secretary of Higher Education department to reply on the matter.

“…requested to offer your comments on irregularities made in the Utkal University, Vani Vihar, Bhubaneswar and Sanskrit University, Puri on issue of regularisation of appointment and promotion of officials respectively…”

Earlier on 22 September 2014 and 02 June 2015, acting on a complaint made by one Dwarikanath Mansingh of Puri, the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions had asked the State government seeking to reply on the issue. In his complaint, Mansingh stated that grave irregularities were made in the regularisation and promotion of consolidated teachers.

“When Mishra was deputy secretary to the Governor, Mishra, misusing the powers of varsity’s Chancellor ordered to regularise jobs of 16 consolidated teachers of the University. Interestingly this was done without approvals of either the State government or the Finance department,” Mansingh told OTV.

When contacted, Higher Education minister Pradeep Panigrahi and department secretary denied to comment on the matter. Mishra was also unavailable for his reaction.

In November 2014, the IAS officer was arrested by a joint team of vigilance officials from Sambalpur and Bhubaneswar divisions in connection with the gross irregularities in the appointment of revenue inspectors (RIs) and amins during his tenure as Collector of Bolangir district during 2012-13.

Mishra is currently lodged in Bolangir district jail.