Shiv Sena MP Milind Deora On Trainee IAS Officer Puja Khedkar

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The allegations against Puja Khedkar are a serious reputational hazard to the service, Milind Deora said

New Delhi:

The explosive allegations against an on-probation Indian Administrative Services officer are a “serious reputational hazard to the service”, Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena MP Milind Deora said today. 

“The allegations against IAS officer Pooja Khedkar are a serious reputational hazard to the service. Are you in government to serve or due to a sense of entitlement? I urge Maharashtra’s Chief Secretary to conduct a comprehensive and impartial investigation into these allegations without delay,” Mr Deora wrote on X. 

“Ensuring justice and preserving public trust in our administrative service is crucial. The UPSC is known for producing high-caliber officers for public service. Those lacking merit and ethics are not fit to hold important public offices,” he added.

A 2023-batch IAS officer, Ms Khedkar faces multiple charges and is under scrutiny for allegedly lying about her OBC status, and visual and mental disabilities to secure perks otherwise not meant for trainee IAS officers. She allegedly used a red beacon – reserved only for VIP government vehicles – and a “Government of Maharashtra” sticker on her private car, an Audi sedan.

Reportedly, she even used Additional Collector Ajay More’s office when he was away, removed office furniture, and even asked for personal letterheads. These facilities are not available to officers during their 24-month probation.

Her father, a retired bureaucrat, had reportedly pushed for her demands to be fulfilled.

After Pune Collector Suhas Divase complained to the Maharashtra Chief Secretary about her, Ms Khedkar was transferred to Washim.

“The 2023 batch IAS officer will serve the remaining period of her probation as Supernumerary Assistant Collector in Washim district,” an official order said.

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