New Delhi: As far as careers go, former home secretary and now minister of state in the Narendra Modi government, R.K. Singh has never been short of fireworks.
He was the district magistrate of Samastipur in 1990, tasked with arresting L.K. Advani as he brought his infamous rath yatra to Bihar, en route to Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh from Somnath in Gujarat.
Lalu Prasad was the chief minister and it is a move for which the now beleaguered politician is still widely hailed.
It was clearly a move that did not impact Singh’s profile one bit as the same Advani picked him to work as joint secretary in the Home Ministry from 1999 to 2004, when the National Democratic Alliance was in power.
That he was very good at what he did is suggested by the fact that Singh served as Union home secretary under the Congress party-led United Progressive Alliance from 30th June 2011 to 30th June 2013.
It is believed that then home minister P. Chidambaram was very impressed by Singh’s efficiency and believed he was the man for the job.
However, on his retirement, Singh chose to join the BJP amid much fanfare, expressing his admiration for the party’s approach on issues of national security.
There was a brief controversy when he went on a criticism spree of then home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, his former boss, after joining the BJP.
The Congress reacted sharply to this. Singh has been a member of the Lok Sabha since 2014, representing Arrah from Bihar.
Singh is among four former bureaucrats who have been sworn in as ministers in the latest re-shuffle.