Mumbai confidential: Rane sets the pace



Narayan Rane has whipped the whip immediately after taking over the helm of the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME). He has told his staff that no one can take vacation without his permission. He also asked the bureaucrats to submit a status report on MSMEs within 48 hours. Even as prime minister of the Sena-BJP government in Maharashtra in the 1990s and later as finance and industry minister of the congressional NCP government, he enjoyed the reputation of a tough overseer.

Gadkari minus one

With the expansion of the cabinet, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari only has one portfolio of roads, traffic and highways. The ministry for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, for which he was also responsible until last week, now goes to Narayan Rane, the highest-ranking of the newcomers. BJP observers are examining whether Gadkari has been downsized or whether it was an act of kindness to take the MSME portfolio away from him, as he can now concentrate fully on one of the centre’s most important services.

Hold your breath

The state’s IPS officials, especially the middle levels of the hierarchy, wait with bated breath for the state government‘s annual transfer orders. Since July 1, when the time window for transfers was finally reopened by the Maha Vikas Aghadi government, there have been rumors that up to 47 IPS officials could be transferred during this round. Sources in Mantralaya say the decision on these postings was “almost unanimous”.

Goa calling

After the excavations in Mumbai, the Narcotics Control Bureau is now targeting Goa. It is said that Sameer Wankhede, who was appointed as zone director to investigate drug allegations related to the suicide of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, is now seeking to rid the tourist destination of its reputation as a “hash hotspot”. As zone director he is also responsible for Goa.

Hopes dashed

After Sena MLA and Chairman Bhaskar Jadhav’s spokesman suspended 12 BJP MLAs in the two-day monsoon session last week, he had hoped to be considered for the spokesperson’s office, vacant since Nana Patole as President of the State Congress. But if there is any reason he will not make it, it is because the NCP is determined that those who leave their ranks and defected to other parties should not be allowed into positions. Jadhav left the NCP to join Sena. Pawar is very clear that the post belongs to Congress.

Women’s team

Following the appointment of Prajakta Lavangare-Verma as Nagpur division chairman, another woman, R. Vimala, was posted to Nagpur as a district collector. Lavangare-Verma, born in 2001, is the first female officer to head the division that covers seven districts. Vimala’s focus in recent years has been on empowering women.

Compiled by Shubhangi Khapre, Yogesh Naik and Mohamed Thaver



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