The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecom has failed to appoint a permanent Executive Director for the National Information Technology Board (NITB) for the last one year.
Sources said that the fifth extension of Director General Administration NITB Syed Husnain Abbas Kazmi as acting ED NITB has also expired on May 18, 2022.
The Ministry of IT & T last week conducted interviews for the selection of ED NITB in addition the Ministry has shortlisted three candidates, sources added.
It is pertinent to note that head-hunting firm, Professional Employers Pvt. Ltd had shortlisted some 11 candidates for the position of ED NITB.
Sources said that a lobby sitting in the Ministry of IT&T, as well as the PM secretariat, delayed the appointment process of new ED NITB as reportedly the former acting ED allegedly gave favors by appointing their recommended persons in NITB through a third party.
Whenever the tenure of the acting ED ends, the officials of the Ministry of IT&T prepare a summary for the extension of tenure.
As per the Establishment Division document issued on January 10, 2022, MoIT&T initiated a summary for the PM regarding the charge of the post of ED, NITB to Syed Husnain Abbas Kazmi DG (Administration), MP-II Scale for a further period of forty-five days from the date of notification to this effect.
The summary states that a summary was moved by the Ministry of IT & Telecom on 26th October 2021 to assign the charge of the post of ED NITB to Syed Husnain Abbas Kazmi, DG (Administration), MP-II Scale for a period of three months w.e.f 15th October 2021 or till the appointment of a regular incumbent, whichever is earlier.
The Prime Minister’s Office vile U.O. No. 2462/SPM/2021 dated 12th November 2021 approved the proposal with the modification that charge of the post shall be assigned for a period of two months only w.e.f 15th October 2021 which expired on 14th December 2021.
The summary further states that another summary for the appointment of ED NITB SPPS-I was moved on 23rd November 2021 by this Ministry.
The Prime Minister’s Office vide U.O. No. 2818/SPM/2021 dated December 17, 2021 approved the proposal proffered by the MoIT&T vide para 5 (ii) of the summary regarding the appointment of ED, NITB through a headhunting firm, with the stipulation that the process of appointment shall be completed within a period of forty-five days.
The M/o IT & Telecom has proposed that the charge of the vacant post of ED, NITB may be assigned to Syed Husnain Abbas Kazmi, DG (Administration), MP-II Scale for a further period of forty-five days from the date of notification to this effect.
The summary has been examined and as pointed out in the previous Summary for the Prime Minister dated 23.11.2021, Establishment Division again observes that the nature of the charge proposed has not been specified. Furthermore, MP Scales Policy, 2021 does not contain any provision which allows the grant of any charge of a post to an MP scale holder ( Syed Husnain Abbas Kazmi) Director General (Administration), MP-II scale in the instant case.
Sources said that currently there are a number of IT-related projects pending in NITB due to the stubbornness of DG admin. Kazmi’s tenure as DG admin is going to expire next month and reportedly he is struggling hard to get another term, sources added.
Sources also said that NAB is also investigating the various complaints against Syed Husnain Abbas Kazmi due to his involvement in kickbacks and corruption charges for awarding the various projects.