Secretary to Chief Minister Ajit Roy IAS had raised queries over the staff proposed to be allotted to Pratapsingh Rane by virtue of him having been accorded Lifetime Cabinet status. This has been revealed in the information obtained under the Right to Information Act by Adv. Aires Rodrigues from the General Administration Department at the Secretariat.
When the proposal to create 18 posts as staff for Pratapsingh Rane was placed before him on 6th April, Ajit Roy in his noting advised the General Administration Department to examine the requirement of personal staff for Pratapsingh Rane to whom no specific work or task had been assigned. But Ajit Roy was overruled by other officials including the Chief Secretary and Chief Minister.
As per the RTI documents, within days of the notification bestowing on him lifetime cabinet status, Pratapsingh Rane on 20th January sent his chosen list of 17 staff he wanted appointed from 7th January which was the day that notification of lifetime cabinet status was issued.
Pratapsingh Rane later on 14th March sent a revised list dropping former Health Director Dr. Rajananda Desai who he had earlier proposed as one of his Officer on Special Duty.
The file notings also reveal that the file despite having wide financial ramifications was processed in a tearing hurry without even seeking the opinion of the Law department and clearance from the Finance department.
The order creating those 18 posts as staff for Pratapsingh Rane with an annual financial implication of approximately 115 lakhs was issued on 22nd April. The order states that the posts shall be created from 7th January 2022 with Pratapsingh Rane entitled to two Officers on Special duty , one Advisor, one Under Secretary, two Private Secretaries, a Personal Assistant, three Junior Assistants , two Computer-cum- telephone operators, two drivers and four Multi Tasking staff. The Goa cabinet gave its post-facto nod on 26th April.
The Bombay High Court at Goa on April 25th admitted the petition filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues challenging that Lifetime cabinet status given to Pratapsingh Rane and is now scheduled to further hear the matter on May 2nd on interim relief.