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New Delhi: Senior Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer and anti-corruption crusader Ashok Khemka has been transferred for the 45th time in his 22-year career in the central services.

The senior Haryana cadre bureaucrat, who was named transport commissioner and secretary by the Haryana government in November last year, was transferred on Wednesday evening as secretary and director general of archaeology and museums department in the state government.

“Tried hard to address corruption and bring reforms in Transport despite severe limitations and entrenched interests. Moment is truly painful," Khemka tweeted on Wednesday evening after the transfer order.

Khemka was among nine high-ranking IAS officers of Haryana government who were transferred by the state government on Wednesday evening.

Khemka gained prominence for investigating irregularities in the land deals of Robert Vadra, son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, when the party was in power in Haryana under chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda. The Congress lost the assembly election in October last year and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the first time formed a majority government on its own.

Khemka’s transfer may hurt the image of the BJP, which came to power in Haryana on an anti-corruption plank, analysts said.

“A person who is trying to be honest and work properly should not be transferred and treated like this. This action of the state government will not help the BJP in Haryana because it came to power on the promise to end corruption. Ashok Khemka is a whistleblower and any action against such an officer will only hurt the image of the party," said Ghanshyam Dev, a Chandigarh-based political analyst.

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