THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Revenue Secretary V Venu, who was at loggerheads with the government, has been removed as the chief executive officer of Rebuild Kerala Initiative (RKI), a pet project of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. Principal Secretary (Finance) Rajesh Kumar Singh replaced Venu as the new chief executive officer. However, Venu would remain a member of the RKI council.
Rebuild Kerala was formed with Venu as its chief executive officer to aid in the reconstruction, rehabilitation and overall recovery of the state after the devastating floods. Under his leadership, the World Bank sanctioned Rs 1,780 crore for the rebuild initiative.
But he got into the bad books of the government after he protested against the abrupt removal of his junior and survey director V R Premkumar in March. In his letter to the chief secretary and the offices of the chief minister and revenue minister, Venu said the abrupt transfer of Premkumar would not only demotivate him but also send a negative signal to IAS officers in sensitive and responsible positions. Venu even threatened to go on long leave if the transfer was not retracted. However, the government stuck to its stand.