Back to back permanent appointments at Raj Bhavan, Guv Khan’s intervention comes under scanner

Kerala CM Pinarayai Vijayan-Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan

Thiruvananthapuram: At a time when the Opposition is alleging mutual accord between the state government and Governor Arif Mohammed Khan over various matters, back to back permanent appointments are happening at Raj Bhavan– Governor’s official residence.

The state government has issued an order giving permanent appointments to Raj Bhavan PRO SD Prince. Last day, the cabinet decided to permanently appoint Governor’s photographer P Dileep based on Khan’s recommendation.

Notably, a day before the state Assembly session, Governor Arif Mohammed Khan refused to sign the policy address. It is learnt that the governor took the move as expressing strong displeasure over a letter written by the government against the appointment of a senior journalist-turned politician in a key post in the Raj Bhavan. The issue was resolved after the government, yielding to the Governor's pressure, replaced K R Jyothilal as principal secretary, General Administration Department (GAD) with a senior civil servant.

Meanwhile, SD Prince earlier was working as a PRO of Kerala University. He has also worked as a PRO of KSEB. Though he retired from the service in 2020, he continued at Raj Bhavan as a temporary staff member. The reappointment in a permanent position is also based on Khan’s recommendation. He will be eligible for a salary scale of his retired position.

The back to back permanent appointments will trigger another controversy as the opposition is already up in arms against the alleged accord between Khan and the government.

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