Tales of a bureaucrat

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: How is the life of an IAS officer like? Is it only about attending parties and hobnobbing with politicians? What kind of pressures does he/she have to deal with? How does society treat the officer? These all and more questions are answered in ‘Tiger Hunting Stories: Lessons on the Art of the Possible’ by IAS officer-turned author K Pradeep Chandra.

Beginning with life in the academy, including the ‘district training’ phase in Karimnagar, Pradeep shares of incidents during his first posting as sub-collector of Rajahmundry in East Godavari district. Here, he says he helped groups warring over ‘lanka’ lands resolve the issue permanently. Despite being an atheist, he says he stood by his ‘official karma’ and performed the first puja during Sivaratri at the renowned Kotilingala temple. 

He narrates the quote of a retired IAS officer AVS Reddy, who had said, “In every government file there is the life of a poor man.” To that effect, Pradeep says, he has lived up to the promise made to his father on changing the lives of at least 100 families.

A few notable achievements mentioned are – his involvement in the implementation of NTR’s `2 per kg rice scheme; drafting the ‘Apathbandhu’ insurance scheme; setting up a special court for Dalits in Tsunduru in Guntur district; breaching the ‘Brahmin’ barrier by becoming a secretary in the finance department; ensuring the setting up of a Japanese auto plant at Sri City in Andhra Pradesh, among others.

The author tells of his effort and negotiation done to ensure that IKEA set up its first store in India at Hyderabad, and recalls various examples of his contributions to ensure Telangana and Hyderabad, especially, get more industrial projects from MNCs. He also shares with the readers of his important role in the passing of TS-iPASS Act, which enabled Telangana to be ranked first in the country in ‘Ease of Doing Business’ rankings in 2017.

All in all, Tiger Hunting Stories is an anecdotal biography of K Pradeep Chandra, with interesting incidents that show how the department works in real-world scenarios. A must read for those interested in getting a ring-side view of the life of an IAS officer.
Publisher: HarperCollins
Pages: 298
Price: Rs 699

 shyam@newindianexpress.com @shyamyadagiri

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