Senior IAS officer B K Prasad, who probed the Ishrat Jahan missing files case and was at the centre of a row after a report alleged he was 'tutoring' a witness, today got a new Secretary-level posting for a two- year period.
Prasad, who was appointed as Secretary, National Commission for Denotified, Nomadic and Semi-nomadic Tribes, had got a two-month extension ending this Sunday after he was due to retire on May 31 after completing 60 years of age on superannuation. He is working as Additional Secretary in Home Ministry.
The Appointments Committee of Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved appointment of Prasad to the new post for two years, an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said.
The Commission, which works under Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, was constituted in 2005 to study various developmental aspects of De-notified, Nomadic and Semi Nomadic tribes in the country.
Prasad, a 1983 batch IAS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre, had rubbished the allegations of 'tutoring' a witness while probing into 'missing papers' relating to the Ishrat Jahan encounter case, contesting that he had conducted a fair inquiry and that all officers inquired by him are fully capable of answering questions relating to the probe on their own.
"No evidence has been produced establishing that Mr Ashok Kumar testified being 'tutored' during my alleged conversation," he had said.
The government had earlier appointed Maharashtra cadre IAS officer Bipin Bihari Mallick as his replacement in the Home Ministry.
In the aftermath of the controversy surrounding the issue of missing papers from the file dealing with the filing of affidavit in Ishrat Jahan case, the Home Ministry had ordered an enquiry by Prasad on March 14, this year. The panel has submitted its report on June 15.
19-year-old Ishrat Jahan and three others were killed in an alleged fake encounter in Gujarat in 2004. The Gujarat Police had then claimed those killed were LeT terrorists and had gone there to assassinate the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
The papers, which disappeared from the Home Ministry, include the copy of an affidavit vetted by the then Attorney General and submitted in the Gujarat High Court in 2009 and the draft of the second affidavit vetted by the AG to which changes were made by the then Home Minister P Chidambaram.