Achuthanandan appointed as ARC Chairman

Thiruvananthapuram: In a significant decision, CPI(M)-led LDF government today appointed veteran marxist leader and former chief minister, V S Achuthanandan as the Chairman of the Administrative Reforms Commission with cabinet rank.

V S Achuthanandan
V S Achuthanandan was today appointed as the Chairman of the Administrative Reforms Commission with cabinet rank.

The much-awaited decision was taken at a cabinet meeting, chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, here.

In addition to the 92-year-old Achutanandan as Chairman, the newly set-up Commission, which envisages improving administrative efficiency, would have former chief secretaries C P Nair and Neela Gangadharan as members, an official release said.

The Chairman would have cabinet rank and would also have personal staff. The two members would enjoy the rank of chief secretary, it said.

The decision comes after the LDF government introduced the Legislative Assembly (Removal of Disqualifications) Amendment Bill in the state Assembly last month to ensure that an elected MLA does not attract any disqualification even if he takes charge of such a post.

Opposition Congress had criticised the move saying it would further burden the state’s ‘Consolidated Fund’.

Achuthanandan had led the LDF to an impressive victory in the May 16 Assembly polls by vigorously campaigning for the Left front.

However, he was sidelined by the party for the chief ministerial post citing advanced age and physical limitations and Vijayan was chosen.

Late party veterans EMS Namboodiripad and EK Nayanar had held earlier the chairmanship of Administrative Reforms Commission.