Govt appoints finance secretary S Narayan as secretary in PMO

New Delhi: The Indian government has appointed finance secretary Dr S Narayan as the secretary in the Prime Minister's Office (PMO).

Narayan will formally assume charge after 30 June 2003, when he is due for superannuation. Official sources say department of expenditure secretary D C Gupta will take over as the new finance secretary after Narayan demits office.

Gupta will, however, continue to be the expenditure secretary even after his elevation to the post of the finance secretary. At the same time, the department of economic affairs (DEA) will not come under Gupta's domain.

The government will soon appoint new secretaries to the DEA as well as the department of banking and insurance. While the DEA secretary's post will become vacant following Narayan's exit, revenue department secretary Vineeta Rai is currently holding the additional charge as the banking secretary.

It is learnt that Adarsh Kishore and Pradipta Ghosh, who are additional secretaries in the finance ministry and the PMO, respectively, and have been empanelled for the secretary rank, will fill the vacant slots. Kishore is tipped to be the new banking secretary and Ghosh the DEA secretary.

Narayan's appointment as the secretary in the PMO is seen to be significant, particularly in the light of this post having been previously occupied by the high-profile, reformist bureaucrat N K Singh.

The PMO has been without a secretary since Singh's departure and the subsequent appointment as the planning commission member. Narayan's new innings is expected to provide a fresh impetus to reforms and reinforce the PMO's role in the overall economic decision-making.