Murmu belongs to Scheduled Tribes (ST) but media won’t let you know

7th August 2020

7th August 2020

Girish Chandra Murmu

This of course is known that within a day of laying down his duties as a Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory, Girish Chandra Murmu has taken charge as the 14th Comptroller and Auditor General of India.  What’s not known that Murmu belongs to the Scheduled Tribes (ST) of India.

Put it down to India’s media which misses no chance to highlight any wrongdoing done against minorities or Dalits but would turn its back if those from the disadvantaged group are promoted in hierarchy by the Modi government.

What would perhaps be also little known is that he was the principal secretary to Narendra Modi during the latter’s tenure as chief minister of Gujarat. He is a 1985 Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer.

Murmu was born in Betnoti village of Mayurbhanj district in Odisha in a Santal family on November 21, 1959. He is the eldest among eight siblings—six brothers and two sisters. One of his brothers is currently is in a senior position in Reserve Bank of India (RBI). He took a post-graduate degree in political science and then did his MBA from University of Birmingham.

Murmu’s career took wings when he was made joint secretary of home department in Gujarat in 2004 which was headed by Amit Shah, presently India's home minister. Murmu had the task of handling the 2002 Gujarat riots cases when Shah was in jail. It was Murmu who prepared his senior’s papers.

The union government changes the special status of Jammu and Kashmir state on August 5, 2019 and on that day itself, the then L-G, Satya Pal Malik, resigned. As the state was dissolved, the post of governor was abolished too. Murmu took charge on October 31, 2019 and stayed put till this week.

Murmu is described as a hands-on bureaucrat. He was among the officials who devised the Rs 80,000-crore package announced by the Modi government for J and K. As an L-G of the Union Territory, Murmu had a difficult job in restarting things in new J and K. He also did a pretty good job in reining in political lobbies.  

Murmu’s elevation as a CAG by the Modi government has a political message too. While Modi’s detractors talk of Hindutva politics in which neither Dalits nor Muslims have any place, the appointment of president Ram Nath Kovind, a Dalit, and now Murmu is a sign that merit alone matters in present times. 

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