Corporate honchos, top elite service brass join BJP in Chhattisgarh

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Top officials from elite services and the corporate world took the primary membership of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Chhattisgarh on Friday. The party is in power both, in the Centre and the state.

Apart from senior IAS official from the Chhattisgarh cadre, R C Sinha, two senior Indian Police Service (IPS) officials, Rajiv Srivastava and N K S Thakur, two Indian Forest Service (IFS) and a General Manager of National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) were among the 24 officials to join the saffron camp. All officials have retired from services.

The other prominent officials include two from the Indian Revenue Service (IRS) who retired as additional commissioner of excise, a former deputy director general of Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and a colonel from Indian Army. Seven state police services (SPS) officials also took BJP membership in the presence of party President Amit Shah, who was on a day's visit to the state capital.

With Chhattisgarh about to go to polls in November, the retired civil servants are keen to give politics a go. Just a month ago, serving IAS and collector of state capital Raipur, O P Choudhary, joined BJP and drew national attention for quitting the elite service within just 13 years.

“More and more bureaucrats are now taking interests in politics both at the Centre and the State,” says Sanjay Dixit, editor of New Power Game, a web portal dedicated to news about the bureaucracy. He asserts that it is a healthy sign, as top officials are acquainted with policies and the working of the adminsitration, which can help in better governance.

In Chhattisgarh, whose first chief minister Ajit Jogi happens to be an IAS officer, even opposition Congress is not behind in embracing former bureaucrats. It welcomed two senior IAS officials, Sergius Minj and R P S Tyagi, to the party last month.  

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