Career bureaucrat Anil Baijal looks set to become the next Lt Governor of Delhi, a post which has fallen vacant after the sudden resignation of Najeeb Jung.
A 1969 batch IAS officer, Baijal had served as Union Home Secretary under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government besides holding key positions in other ministries. He was removed as Union home secretary when the UPA government assumed power in May, 2004.
70-year-old Baijal, whose appointment papers have been sent to President Pranab Mukherjee for his approval, had retired from service in 2006 as Secretary, Urban Development Ministry. He is a former vice chairman of Delhi Development Authority.
Baijal was actively associated with the designing and roll-out of Rs 60,000 crore Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) launched by the Manmohan Singh government.
The former bureaucrat was also on the executive council of the think-tank Vivekananda International Foundation, several of whose former members have been appointed to senior positions by the Modi government including National Security Advisor Ajit Doval. Jung had submitted his resignation on December 22, ending a nearly three-and-half-year-long eventful tenure, mostly marked by bitter confrontation with AAP government.
Baijal will have to navigate tricky jurisdictional issues that arise out of Delhi’s unique position as a union territory acting as the national capital.
Baijal was earlier tipped to replace NN Vohra as the governor of Jammu and Kashmir. But the move fell through following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani on July 8 as the law and order situation in the border state deteriorated and the Centre decided against changing the Governor at this juncture.