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Why Was Pooja Khedkar Transferred?

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IAS Trainee Officer Transferred Amidst Allegations of Misconduct and Lavish Lifestyle

 

By Tejas Navale

Mycitynews Service, July 8

Pune: A considerable number of students annually prepare for the civil service examination with the intent of serving the public. Despite the exam's reputation for being extremely challenging, lakhs of aspirants take the test, attracted by the power and responsibilities associated with civil services. However, there have been instances where officers, instead of serving the people, misuse their positions for personal gain and adopt extravagant lifestyles funded by public money.

One such incident has surfaced in Pune, where a probationary IAS officer was transferred to Washim district by the government following complaints of reckless and arrogant behaviour.

The Pune District Collector lodged a complaint against the officer with the Chief Secretary of the state. After reviewing the detailed report on the officer's conduct, the state government issued her transfer orders yesterday.

The officer in question is Pooja Manorama Dilip Khedkar, a 2022 batch IAS officer. Khedkar recently completed her initial training at the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration in Mussoorie. She was subsequently posted as an assistant trainee collector in Pune to complete the remainder of her probationary period, starting on June 3.

However, soon after her joining Pune, Khedkar, the collectorate alleged, began to display lavish behaviour and treat other officers with disdain. 

Although it is illegal to use the Maharashtra Government template on a private vehicle, Khedkar allegedly affixed the template along with a VIP number plate to her personal Audi car. Additionally, she is accused of illegally installing a red-blue beacon light on her private vehicle, the collectorate complaint to the govt.

Her demands did not stop there. Upon commencing her probation, Khedkar insisted on having a separate office near the district collector's office, along with a dedicated staff. When the senior officer was away in Mumbai on official business, Khedkar allegedly took over the anti-chamber office by force and made it her own. 

The situation escalated when Dr. Suhas Diwase, the Pune District Collector, ordered the removal of Khedkar’s furniture and nameplate from the ante-chamber.

 In response, Khedkar reportedly sent a message to Diwase, claiming that his actions were contemptuous towards her. Following this incident, Diwase submitted a detailed report to the Chief Secretary, requesting Khedkar’s transfer to ensure the smooth functioning of city administration.

Pooja Khedkar’s father, Dilip Khedkar, has served as the commissioner of the state's pollution control department. After his retirement, he contested this year’s Lok Sabha elections from the Ahmednagar South constituency on a Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi ticket. Her mother, Dr. Manorama Khedkar, is a Sarpanch of Bhalgaon village, Pathardi, Ahmednagar.

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