IAS officer Ashok Khemka promoted

Whistleblower Haryana IAS officer Ashok Khemka, who cancelled the controversial land deal between realty major DLF and Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra, was today promoted to the rank of principal secretary by the government. Five other IAS officers of the 1991 batch too have been promoted.

Khemka was facing a charge sheet filed against him during the previous Hooda-led Congress government in connection with the DLF-Vadra land issue.

With the change of regime in Haryana, the Khattar-led BJP government in November 2015 dropped the charge sheet against Khemka clearing him of all charges. His chargesheet could have otherwise come in the way of his promotion.

Khemka has been transferred 45 times in his career spanning nearly 25 years. Even the incumbent BJP government transferred him to an arguably less significant post as Director General, Archaeology and Museums, a charge he holds currently.

The government said the officers who have been promoted will continue holding the same charge which they are presently handling. But Khemka’s promotion entitles him to a post of the rank of financial commissioner and principal secretary. Khemka said he was happy being promoted and was awaiting his next posting order.

Khemka hit the limelight in 2012 when he junked the mutation of land deal between Skylight Hospitality owned by Vadra and DLF. The Rs 58 crore-deal related to 3.5 acres of land in Gurgaon’s Shikohpur village was sold by Vadra to DLF amid controversy over allegations of undervaluation and more. Vadra had made windfall gains in the deal.
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