New Delhi, Feb 13: Union Health Secretary Keshav Desiraju has been moved to the department of consumer affairs, while AIDS Control department Secretary Luv Verma has been given additional charge as health secretary, a statement said Thursday.
Desiraju is a Union Territory Cadre IAS officer of the 1978 batch.
Verma, who is also a 1978 batch IAS officer of the Uttar Pradesh cadre, will be health secretary for three months with immediate effect, the statement said.
Meanwhile, some NGOs expressed concern at the manner in which Desiraju was transferred.
NGO Jan Swasthya Abhiyan said it was “inconceivable that a routine transfer would be effected in such a precipitate manner”.
“Nor is there any evidence that Desiraju’s services were urgently required in the ministry of consumer affairs to which he has now been transferred,” it said.
Asked about his transfer, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said these were “administrative things”.
“I don’t think people should get into it. Officers’ and ministers’ portfolios change. It is a regular affair. He (Desiraju) is a capable officer,” Azad said.
Reports said Desiraju was transferred as he did not give his go ahead to the re-appointment of former Medical Council of India (MCI) chief Ketan Desai, who was jailed on corruption charges.