Senior IAS officer Nalini Netto will be appointed as the new Chief Secretary of Kerala.
The decision to elevate Nalini Netto, who is presently the Additional Chief Secretary of Home and Vigilance, and Principal secretary to the Chief Minister, was taken in the cabinet session on Wednesday. She will assume office on April 1.
The decision was reportedly taken since the present Chief Secretary S Vijayanand's tenure comes to an end on March 31. Nalini Netto's name had been doing the rounds as a probable replacement to Vijayanand, considering that she is the senior-most IAS officer.
A 1981 batch officer, Nalini Netto has served as Tourism Secretary, Irrigation Secretary, district Collector of Thiruvananthapuram, among other posts. She was the first woman Chief Electoral Officer of Kerala.
Nalini was serving as the Chief Electoral Officer for the state when she was appointed to the post of Additional Chief Secretary in 2014, by the previous UDF government.
Her tenure as the Additional Chief Secretary has been an eventful one, with the officer taking tough stands in a number of cases including the Puttingal temple fire tragedy in Kollam last year.
Recently, a complaint was filed at the anti-corruption court in Thiruvananthapuram, that accused Nalini Netto of having misused her powers to remove TP Senkumar from the post of DGP of the state.
During her tenure as the transport secretary in 1999, she had also raised a sexual harassment complaint against former MP Neelalohithadasan Nadar. In 2005, a magistrate court sentenced him to one year imprisonment.
As a result of the reshuffle of senior IAS officers on Wednesday, Subrata Biswas, Additional Chief Secretary of Public Works will replace Nalini Netto as the Additional Chief Secretary of Vigilance.
Meanwhile VS Senthil, the Additional Chief Secretary of Planning and Economic Affairs and Environment, will take over as the Chief Minister's Principal Secretary.