Jairaj Phatak

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Jairaj Moreshwar Phatak, an IAS officer of 1978 batch, served as the 25th municipal commissioner of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), India[1] from May 2007 to October 2009[2] and he is known for encyclopedic knowledge and sharp replies.[3] He succeeded Johny Joseph as the Municipal Commissioner of Mumbai in May 2007.

Jairaj Phatak did his M.Sc. (Physics) from Indian Institute of Technology Bombay in 1975 and a Masters in Public Administration from John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University and D.B.A.(doctorate) from Bombay University,[citation needed] making him one of the highly educated bureaucrats in the country.

Earlier, he served as the Principal Secretary in Urban Development department of Maharashtra Government. During his tenure as Secretary, school education department was lauded for the efforts he undertook to improve welfare of students.

Controversies[edit]

Gag orders to jouranlists[edit]

Phatak issued a six point "gag order" to journalists of Mumbai, which he withdrew after much pressure and one of the restriction he wanted to impose on journalists was that only one question can be raised by each journalist during media briefing.[4] By this failed order, he also wanted to throw out those journalists who did not toe in his line, from civic the headquarters.[4] Journalists staged protest outside Phatak's cabin, irked by the contents of his guidelines and decided to self impose some of the restrictions he wanted, such as switching off cell phones during media briefings etc.[4]

Adarsh society housing scam[edit]

Phatak denied his role in Adarsh Housing Society scam, in reply to a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) [5] However, his son is a member of the society and Phatak said, in his affidavit that "the petitioner wants to penalise me because my son has allegdly been benefitted on account of increase in the property price".[5] However, Government of India permitted CBI to prosecute Jairaj Phatak in Adarsh scam.[2] CBI accused him of granting permission for final height of high rise building even though he did not have such powers and raided his residence in March 2011.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Jairaj Phatak is new BMC chief". 2007-05-05. Retrieved 2007-05-15. 
  2. ^ a b c Marpkwar, Prafulla (16 March 2011). "'Phatak's fate in PMO's hands'". The Times of India. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Jairaj Phatak may move out of BMC, take Delhi job". The Times of India. 15 October 2009. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c "Phatak withdraws media gag". The Times of India. 2 July 2009. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Sequeira, Rosy (7 January 2011). "Jairaj Phatak refutes role in Adarsh Scam". DNA. Retrieved 31 May 2013.