New Delhi: Showering praise on Finance Secretary Hasmukh Adhia, who retires on November 30, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Saturday said he was a no-nonsense civil servant who performed his job with professionalism.
In a Facebook post titled ‘Dr. Hasmukh Adhia retires’, Jaitley said “he was unquestionably a highly competent, disciplined, no-nonsense civil servant and of course, with impeccable integrity.”
His only diversion from his duties was his passion for spirituality and yoga, he added.
Jaitley also said the government wanted to use the outgoing Finance Secretary’s capability and experience in some alternate capacity.
“He (Adhia) had informed me earlier this year that he would not work for a single day after the 30th of November 2018. His time thereafter belongs to his favourite passion and of course his son,” Jaitley wrote.
Adhia, a 1981-batch Gujarat cadre officer of the Indian Administrative Services (IAS), moved to Delhi in November 2014 as secretary in the Department of Financial Services after Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister.
Giving credit to Adhia for implementing GST, Jaitley said, “It was his efforts supported by his team of officers of centre and state governments, which made it possible to hit the deadline of 1st July 2017. Rate reductions and smoothening of the rough edges were also achieved in a record time.”
Recalling Adhia’s tenure as Revenue Secretary, Jaitley said tax base and tax realisation saw an “exponential increase”.
“He was ably supported by the two boards, CBDT and CBIC. The follow-up after demonetisation in detecting the large cash depositors and making them accountable was no mean challenge,” the Finance Minister noted.
During his four-year stint in the Finance Ministry, Adhia spearheaded rollout of the historic Goods and Services Tax (GST) besides implementing a host of laws to unearth black money.
He was also deeply involved in formulation of various social sector programmes of the Modi government.
“His tenure as the Revenue Secretary will be remembered for various initiatives where he provided the bureaucratic leadership in shaping and implementation of the policy. The campaign against black money both within and outside the country was the initial highlight of the Revenue Department,” he said.
Jaitley also noted that the Income Tax department now functions online with no physical interface between the assessee and the assessment official.
“I wish him all the best for his post retirement life. Thank You Dr. Adhia,” Jaitley said.