BHUBANESWAR: The state government on Monday appointed 1997-batch IAS officer Pramod Kumar Meherda as health secretary in the place of 1990-batch IAS officer Arti Ahuja, who has been transferred as secretary, culture and tourism.
The health department was in the eye of storm for a number of reasons like SUM Hospital tragedy in which 25 people were killed, death of over 110 children in Malkangiri due to Japanese Encephalitis, Dana Majhi episode and poor state of health infrastructure.
Meherda, a MBBS degree holder, who earlier served as mission director, National Health Mission, was chosen for the crucial assignment to boost the state’s health sector, sources said.
As part of the reshuffle, tourism secretary Gagan Kumar Dhal was transferred as agriculture production commissioner. The 1985-batch IAS officer would also be in the supervisory charge of departments like agriculture and farmer’s empowerment, fisheries and animal resources development and cooperation
Transport commissioner Chandra Sekhar Kumar, a 1992-batch IAS officer was transferred as managing director, Odisha Milk Federation (Omfed).
Among others, 1996-batch IAS officer Vir Vikram Yadav, who returned from central deputation, was posted as secretary, science and technology department. Senior bureaucrat Hari Ballav Mishra was appointed as new director, agriculture and food production in place of Meherda.
Source: Times of India