Modi’s principal secretary Nripendra Misra to step down

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Nripendra Misra, the principal secretary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has expressed his intention to be relieved, said a senior government official aware of the development.

Reportedly, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi has requested Nripendra Misra to continue for two weeks,”

Former cabinet secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha, a 1977 batch Uttar Pradesh-cadre IAS officer, who superannuated on Friday has been appointed the officer on special duty (OSD) in the Prime Minister’s Office.

The resignation of Misra, also former Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) chairman, comes at a time when India’s GDP growth slowed down to more than a five-year low of 5% in the June quarter of 2019-20 against 5.8% in the March quarter. This is way below analysts’ expectation of economic growth at 5.7% in the June quarter.

This fall in growth rate will likely lead to more clamour for a stimulus package from the government.

Also, this comes at a time when the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance government has scrapped Article 370 that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir, with tension spilling over in the valley.

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