In a system where sycophants are rewarded, where bureaucracy has become synonymous with corruption & inefficiency and where political lords rule the roost; it is a highly daunting task for an honest IAS officer to maintain his uprightness while fighting all the odds. Often these IAS officers have to face the wrath of politicians and other influential individuals; sometimes in the form of transfers, sometimes in the form of false cases, and sometimes they have to sacrifice their lives while fighting against the corrupt system.
1. Ashok Khemka
Ashok Khemka is a 1991 batch IAS officer of Haryana cadre. His name can often be spotted in the news for his frequent transfers. Within the span of 24 years of his service, he has been transferred for 51 times. He is an epitome of up righteousness and integrity. His vow to work for the service of the nation doesn’t deter him from exposing even the most high profile cases. In the year 2012, this IAS officer dared to expose the land deal of Robert Vadra with DLF which highlighted the corruption of Rs. 20,000 crore to Rs. 35,000 crore. There are instances when frivolous charge sheets have been filed against him to intimidate him, but this did not stop him from doing the good work.
2. D. K. Ravi
D.K. Ravi was an officer of Karnataka cadre. He was an IAS officer of 2009 batch. When he was posted as District Collector in Kolar Distt. of Karnataka, he launched a crackdown on many illegal sand mining projects being carried out. After which he was transferred and given charge of Additional Commissioner of Commercial Taxes. He is known to have exposed many tax-evading defaulters and carried out raids on high profile business groups. But he had to pay heavily for working against influential individuals. He was found dead at his residence on 16 March 2015. According to CBI, he committed suicide, but his family members and social activists think that he has been murdered.
3. Durga Shakti Nagpal
Women like Durga Shakti are an inspiration for the young girls. She came into limelight when she was suspended by Akhilesh Yadav led Samajwadi government for the demolition of a mosque-wall. But political and social activists think otherwise. Her crackdown against the illegal mining in the state seemed to have irked the political class. Along with her, her IAS officer husband Abhishek Singh was also harassed by authorities with suspension for allegations of mistreating a Dalit teacher. When she was working as trainee IAS officer in Punjab, she exposed a land scam in Mohali.
4. Armstrong Pame
Armstrong Pame is the first person from Zeme Tribe of Naga people to have made into the elite services. He is a 2008 batch IAS officer. During his posting as the SDM of Tousem District, he was considerably moved by the daily struggles and hardships faced by the local people; due to the unavailability of the non-motorable road. He took the task of building the road and without the support of any government, he was successful in building a 100 km road (People’s Road) that would link Manipur with Nagaland and Assam. In the absence of funding by the Government, he used the platform of social media to raise funds and was able to raise Rs. 40 lakh. The people of Tousem call him “Miracle Man.”
5. Tukaram Mundhe
Tukaram Mundhe is a 2005 batch IAS Officer of Maharashtra Cadre who is known for his uprightness and devotion to duty. He is also known for his serious endeavour to correct the problems and eradicate corruption. His ‘Walk with Commissioner’ program as the Commissioner of NMMC in Navi Mumbai, where he used to resolve complaints of citizens every Sunday, has been very popular. Mr. Mundhe has been handed nine transfers in 12 years of his service, because of his uprightness and honest attitude.
6. Raju Narayana Swamy
Raju is an IAS officer of Kerala cadre and an IIT Madras alumni. He is known for his crusade against corruption. In his career of 22 years, he was transferred 20 times. He was even compelled to go on forced leave when he refused to work for hands in gloves with corrupt politicians. Raju was sometimes even made to work with his juniors. His investigation against a Kerala Minister T U Kuruvilla made the minister resign from his post. Raju says, “In my service life I have always fought corruption. We could be sidelined, but officers should not get demoralized. The public applause we get for taking a strong stand on issues is what keeps us going.”
7. Anshul Mishra
Anshul is a Tamil Nadu cadre IAS officer. He has made some remarkable achievements. During his tenure as Collector of Madurai, he introduced transparency and accountability in administration by forming a complaint cell and Facebook page for addressing the grievances of people. His novel approach was very successful as he was able to rectify almost 80% of the issues reported by the people. Anshul led the crackdown on illegal granite quarrying and is credited for facilitating fair recruitment process of Anganwadi workers.
8. Yashwant Sonawane
Yashwant Sonawane is one among those who fight against the wrongs until their death. While serving as Additional District Collector of Malegaon Maharashtra; he was brutally murdered by oil adulteration mafia in 2011. When he received a news of adulteration of oil by some mafia, he initiated a probe against them. But while on duty, he was set on fire by Popat Shine- a powerful oil adulteration mafia. He has been declared ‘ Martyr’ for his exemplary courage and dedication towards service. In a contradiction to his honest image, a CBI investigation found that he was killed due to past enmity and had demanded bribe from the same mafia.
9. U Sagayam
U Sagayam is a 1991 batch IAS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre. For his belligerent stance against corruption, his office board bears the message “reject bribes, hold your heads high.” The measure of his up righteousness can be made from the fact that he has been transferred for 25 times in his 27 years of career. He closed down a Pepsi bottling plant when dirt was found in several bottles and took down on sand mafia. In 2004 he discovered irregularities in the use of subsidized cylinders. As per the 2009 data, he had a meager bank balance of Rs. 7172 and a house worth Rs.9 lakh.
10. Rashmi V Mahesh
Rashmi has been transferred 20 times in her 18 years of service. A Karnataka cadre IAS officer, Rashmi is fighting relentlessly against the corrupt education system. She conducted a probe against the Administrative Training Institute of Mysore and found irregularities worth Rs. 100 crore between 2008-2014. In response to this exposure, she was assaulted by an angry mob. In the past, she had conducted investigations into medical and engineering college’s seats which are managed by political leaders.