Shaktikanta Das (TN 80, IAS) Economic Affairs Secretary attended a conference of economic editors ,chaired by FM Arun Jaitley.

An editor from TN asked a question in english and then willy nilly switched over to his mother tongue Tamil.

Much to FM's bewilderment and others' amusement, Das responded in Tamil. The non-Tamilians without understanding a word of what he said, applauded, nevertheless. No rancour. FM enjoyed without knowing the Tamil language.

Now , an opposite experience.

I recall a cognate incident of 2014 under UPA regime that created a huge controversy.

Sudhir Krishna ,the then urban development Secretary,at a meeting chaired by Chidambaram, started speaking in english with smattering of hindi words. Though from UP, he belonged to Karnataka cadre. Suave and no-nonsense officer.

Chidambaram in his typical arrogance. humiliated the poor Secretary asking him to speak in hindi that could be subsequently translated by his officials into english.

Sudhir Krishna registered his protest with Finance Secretrary and also with his minister Kamalnath to bring the humiliation to PM's notice.

Nothing happened as Dr Manmohan Singh. the de jure PM, was perennially in silent mode.The actual power was exercised by the then Congress supremo,the de facto PM.

The incident demoralised the IAS fraternity,rather unfairly.

Such incidents do not occur in NDA with PM Modi at the helm.

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About A.K.Saxena

A K SAXENA, an Indian national, is a retired civil servant from Government of India He is also a freelance journalist with several published investigative articles and columns in various fields to his credit. His writings are a reflection of his interest in writing on divergent themes and making the topics relevant to a wider audience. A post graduate in Chemistry from University of Delhi,he could not sustain his interest in pursuing research and instead chose to enter the government service through the IAS etc exam held by the UPSC. “KALASAVYA” that brought out several publications besides organizing cultural shows.


You can contact me at

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