Chandigarh:The selection and appointment of Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) Chairman is shrouded in mystery. Union Government is keeping mum over the directions of Punjab and Haryana High Court to appoint the Chairman by end of September 2016. The previous Chairman of BBMB Anand Bihari Aggarwal relinquished the charge on September 24, 2015. He was sent back to National Hydro Power Corporation (NHPC), his parent organisation. BBMB’s (Member Irrigation) S K Sharma was given a dual charge. He belonged to Haryana cadre.
On October 19, 2015 applications for appointment of the new Chairman were received, but Jagmohan Singh, Chief Engineer (Irrigation) Haryana moved the High Court alleging that the bar on engineers from partner states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan was violation of the rights to equality. The High Court on July 19, 2016, passed an order directing the government to appoint a new Chairman of BBMB within two months.
The post was re-advertised inviting engineers from all over the country to apply. On November 22, 2016 fresh interview was conducted by the selection committee of BBMB. Two applicants were short listed and the minutes of the meeting were sent to the Union Power Minister, Piyush Goyal. Even after passage of one month no decision has been taken over Chairman.
All India Power Engineers Federation patron Padamjit Singh when approached said that the appointment chairman to BBMB was much delayed and was violation of the High Court order. He said that a candidate from Haryana if inducted would create a controversy as Punjab and Haryana were fighting over sharing of river waters. The control on the river waters remains with BBMB. Already the charge of Chairman was in the hands of S K Sharma who represented Haryana. It is reliably learnt that the minutes of the meeting of the selection committee of BBMB were drafted in a fashion that the place for the recommended two candidates was left blank for Union Minister to fill. Efforts to contact Pardeep Kumar, secretary power, B P Pande, special secretary and Archana Aggarwal, joint secretary did not bear fruit, as all were reported to be huddled in a meeting.
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