Narayana Murthy to be Karnataka's planning board chief, reveals CM Kumaraswamy

H D Kumaraswamy said decision to appoint Narayana Murthy as planning board chief will boost state govt image and attract investors.

Bengaluru: Days after swearing-in as the Chief Minister of Karnataka, H D Kumaraswamy has announced his decision of appointing Infosys co-founder N R Narayana Murthy as the head of the Karnataka Planning Board.

Kumaraswamy informed Bangalore Mirror about his decision to appoint Narayana Murthy (and this is why he met him at his Jayanagar home on June 6) and said that this will boost the image of the Karnataka government as well as help in attract investors.

Kumaraswamy also told Bangalore Mirror that he also intends to bring on board prominent experts from various sectors as members to restore the board’s credibility.

The decision of appointing Narayana Murthy as the head of the Karnataka Planning Board comes within days of the Narendra Modi government announcing lateral entry of professionals; it recently opened up 10 departments for induction of experts at the level of Joint Secretary, a post reserved for officers of the Central Services.

Narayana Murthy would be the first technocrat to head the Karnataka Planning Board and the first professional in the last 18 years.

The Karnataka Chief Minister said he believes that appointing Murthy as deputy Chairman would send a signal that the government is keen to use his expertise. Besides that, Murthy will become a stakeholder in the state’s growth as he would be holding a position in the government and would not just be an advisor as in his previous stint.

The report said that the Karnataka government is also thinking of upgrading the status of the deputy planning board chairman from the present State Minister rank to that of a Cabinet rank for Narayana Murthy.

The Karnataka planning board is a constitutional body and the Chief Minister is its chairman; some of the functions of the State planning board include assessing resources and formulating plans for overall development of the state, besides monitoring progress of plan implementation.

It’s not even a year since Narayana Murthy’s public spat with former CEO Vishal Sikka over the goings-on at Infosys. He has already retired twice from Infosys – in 2011 and then again in October 2014.

Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy said he had ordered the scrapping of the Bengaluru Vision Group (BVG) constituted in 2016 by the previous government for preparing a blueprint for Bengaluru’s overall development as there was no substantial contribution from it.

The group included Narayana Murthy, Wipro chairman Azim Premji, Biocon chief Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Flipkart founder Sachin Bansal among others.

Kumaraswamy said that in place of the BVG, he is planning to put together an exclusive task force for Bengaluru, with prominent citizens and experts from various groups. The task force is likely to be headed by Kumaraswamy.

Kumaraswamy said that Murthy’s expertise and experience would also be utilised for improving Bengaluru’s crumbling infrastructure.

Read the entire article on Bangalore Mirror .

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