Bengaluru, Sep 19 (IANS): After the poignant verbal attack on Indian Administrative Service (IAS) personnel in the legislative Assembly, the Karnataka government has issued a circular imposing a ban on holding press conferences and issuing statements by the bureaucrats.
The order was issued on Saturday.
The move of the government has upset the IAS officers and it is yet to be seen how the IAS Officers Association will respond to the decision.
The circular said that 'it has come to the notice of the government that government officers are indulging in issuing undesirable statements through press notes. These developments will have a wrongful impact on the administration system in the state and they will also embarrass the government'.
The government has considered these developments seriously and imposed a ban on issuing undesirable statements through press conferences and press notes, they are only allowed to carry out reliable and official duties only, the circular said.
The circular warned that, if any government official is found to air his views and opinions on any platforms against the government damaging the image and embarrassing the government, serious disciplinary action will be initiated against them.
However, the government officers are allowed to speak to the media to disseminate official information. They are not allowed to air their grievances through the media, the circular noted.
The circular has been issued in the backdrop of a public spat between JD(S) MLA and former minister Sa.Ra. Mahesh and IAS officer Rohini Sindhoori two months ago. After the development, the state government headed by then Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa had transferred her to the Muzrai department from the post of District Commissioner of Mysuru.
The issue was raised in the legislative Assembly session by Sa.Ra. Mahesh, who charged without taking a name, said that officers should be tamed. "They are minting money here and amassing wealth in Andhra Pradesh. After retirement, they will contest against us in the polls," he charged.
He also said that IAS officers shall not be allotted bungalows and they should be given smaller houses as the public won't go and meet them at their residences.
Former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy supported his party leader and stated on the floor of the House that he had observed the development closely. "Whenever there is an issue, the Chief Secretary summons junior officers to Bengaluru. We have seen how Chief Secretary himself went to Mysuru to sort out the issue. This is not the system," he said.
Kumaraswamy was joined by Revenue Minister R. Ashok who stated that a few officers were indulging in stunts and they need to be tamed. Scores of legislators demanded that action should be taken against bureaucrats in this regard.
However, sources in the IAS officers maintained that they are upset with the government's decision and it is unfair to attack the whole IAS fraternity for the fault of few officers.