Prasanth Nair, who was in the Kerala cadre of the 2007 IAS batch, earned public acclaim when he kickstarted a slew of popular initiatives after he took charge as the collector of Kozhikode.
Prasanth Nair, the IAS officer who commanded a massive social media following during his days as the collector of Kozhikode district, has now been appointed as private secretary to the Minister of State for Tourism (Independent Charge) KJ Alphons. His post will be that of deputy secretary with the minister for a period of five years. A DoPT circular issued on Monday said Nair can be relieved from his current post to take up the new assignment in New Delhi.
Nair, who was in the Kerala cadre of the 2007 IAS batch, earned public acclaim when he kickstarted a slew of popular initiatives after he took charge as the collector of Kozhikode. Programmes like Operation Sulaimani, a decentralized participatory project to address hunger in urban areas, Tere Mere Beach Mein, a project to tackle waste management at Kozhikode Beach, and Yo Appooppa, an attempt to improve the quality of life of the elderly, were runaway successes thanks to large and wholehearted participation of people of the city and beyond.
The ‘Collector Kozhikode’ Facebook page, that Nair himself handled during his term, was awash with compliments and praise for the young IAS officer. Nair’s call for public participation for small tasks like cleaning a dirty pond would elicit a huge response. He soon earned the moniker of ‘Collector Bro’.
In an earlier interview to IndianExpress.com, Nair had said, “Putting a post on Facebook takes just five minutes. Just because my profile picture keeps smiling at you 24×7, doesn’t mean that I’m sitting there throughout. Secondly, I’m not chatting with my girlfriends. The citizens are communicating with me and getting their problems sorted out through this medium. And finally, Facebook and Twitter are additional media for citizen interface.”
Earlier this year, Nair was transferred from Kozhikode to a new post as a secretary in the higher education department. Even though it was a promotion, it was largely seen as a ‘punishment’ for Nair’s tussles with local politicians in Kozhikode. But Nair went on leave instead.
The appointment of Nair as private secretary to KJ Alphons, who hails from Kerala, was being speculated for some time now. The appointment was reportedly delayed due to opposition from the state BJP leadership. Nair, in the past, has also served as secretary to then Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala.
source: http://www.indianexpress.com / The Indian Express / Home> India / by Vishnu Varma / Kochi – November 28th, 2017