Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had last month asked PM Modi to spare about 10 senior Uttar Pradesh officers serving in the central government to give him some elbow room to appoint officials to head important departments.
Government sources said PM Modi's office had shortlisted about 10 officers from Uttar Pradesh from a list of about 30-odd officers. But not everyone on the select list wanted to come back to the state in a tearing hurry. Some declined the offer, preferring to work in the Modi government at the Centre due to family commitments.
Avanish Kumar Awasthi, an Indian Administrative Service, or IAS officer of the 1987 batch was the first to be sent back to Lucknow last month. The officer, who had worked as District Magistrate of Gorakhpur - the parliamentary seat that Yogi Adityanath has been elected to five times since 1998 - was take over all the assignments held by Navneet Sehgal, who was perceived to be too close to the previous regimes. Mr Sehgal was kept without a posting.
Within days of taking charge in March, Chief Minister Adityanath had made it clear that he was not going to move out officers in key posts if they were willing to work harder and longer to diligently implement the new government's policies. Over 200 officers have been handed over their transfer orders in the 50 days that Mr Adityanath has been in the top post; most of these relate to district postings.