NEW DELHI: Retired bureaucrats never retire. Stumped? A look at the information commissions, the transparency watchdogs, all over India reveals that they have become a re-employment arena for bureaucrats.
Even though the Supreme Court has advised looking beyond retired civil servants for posts of information commissioners and chief information commissioners, governments prefer retired bureaucrats over candidates with specializations in other fields.
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An annual study by the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, exclusively accessed by ET, reveals 25 of the 29 information commissions, including the Central Information Commission, are headed by retired civil servants. Information commissions in Goa, Odisha, Tamil Nadu and Uttarakhand are without chiefs. The study found that 76 per cent of the chief information commissioners across are retired IAS officers —it was 69 per cent in 2014 and 74 per cent in 2012.