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Meet Ashok Khemka, IAS officer with 52 transfers in 27 years

This reappointment makes for the IAS officer’s 52nd transfer and comes close on the heels of an interview that Ashok Khemka gave to a mainstream newspaper

New Delhi: Senior IAS officer Ashok Khemka has a feat to his credit that is one of a kind — he has had 52 transfers in his 27-year-long career. He was previously the principal secretary of the Haryana Sports and Youth Affairs Department and has been transferred by the state’s Bharatiya Janata Party-led government to the Science and Technology Department to serve the same post. This reappointment makes for Ashok Khemka’s 52nd transfer and comes close on the heels of an interview that he gave to The Indian Express in which he spoke about Aravallis land consolidation.

Ashok Khemka, a 1991-batch IAS officer whose name is included in the list of nine IAS officers transferred on Sunday, will now serve as the principal secretary at the state’s Science and Technology Department. The government has not specified the reason behind his transfer, in the order issued by Chief Secretary DS Dhesi.

Concerns over Aravallis land consolidation

However, Khemka was transferred soon after he spoke about his concerns regarding the Aravallis land consolidation, saying “it will fuel the greed of land sharks.” Recently, the Haryana government had reversed a six-year-old order of Khemka, where he withdrew the consolidation process of 3,184 acres of land in the village Kot (Faridabad).
Ashok Khemka, a 1991-batch IAS officer whose name is included in the list of nine IAS officers transferred on Sunday, will now serve as the principal secretary at the state’s Science and Technology Department. The government has not specified the reason behind his transfer, in the order issued by Chief Secretary DS Dhesi
An inquiry showed that most of the 2,565 acres of land included the uncultivable hilly area of Aravallis. “A copy is forwarded to the officers concerned for information and necessary action.” Dhesi was not available for comments while Haryana BJP spokesperson Raman Malik said, “He (Khemka) is a good man. I hope he brings new dimensions to science and technology in the state.”

Khemka’s 6th transfer under BJP-led state government

After the BJP government came to power in Haryana in October 2014, Khemka has been transferred for the sixth time. Khemka had told The Indian Express on Saturday, “Close to 80 percent of the land concerned is hills and forests of the Aravallis, which will be destroyed in the name of consolidation. Big private interests will take over common property resources and destroy the already fragile environment of the NCR.” “Consolidation proceedings in the eco-fragile zone of the Aravallis will not increase agricultural productivity, but fuel the greed of land sharks. An inquiry into land purchases will unravel the truth,” Khemka had said.