Popular Malkangiri collector worked hard for people

February 24th, 2011 - 11:07 pm ICT by IANS  

By Jatindra Dash
Bhubaneswar, Feb 24 (IANS) In his frequent interactions with the people of Malkangiri as he traversed remote areas of the district on his motorcycle, Malkangiri district collector R. Vineel Krishna, 31, never gave the impression he was a senior official and sincerely tried to help the tribals and poor. His popularity can be gauged from the fact that thousands in the area protested against his abduction and cheered at his release Thursday evening.Krishna was freed by Maoists Thursday after being held in their captivity for eight days.

Officials who have seen his work from close quarters say Krishna aggressively pursues projects, and often used to interact with the poor and tribals, using his motorcycle to visit remote areas.

“He is a practical man. If you meet him, you will never feel that you are talking to an IAS officer,” Manoranjan Sahu, a resident of Malkangiri said.

Krishna’s popularity is evident from the fact that thousands of people from various walks of life including, women, children and government officials staged protests, carried out marches in the places where he worked after his abduction by Maoists Feb 16.

Most of the places where he worked observed a spontaneous shutdown to extend support to him.

“I come from a good family background and got the best that the society can provide me. Therefore, I believed that it’s my responsibility to serve the society,” Krishna said in an internet post soon after joining IAS while guiding students aspiring for the civil services.

He tried to help the poor, solve their problems and worked hard to make government programmes reach the vulnerable sections of society during the past five years of his career.

He joined the Indian Administrative Service in 2005. His first posting was as a probationer in the Bangiriposi block of the tribal populated district of Mayurbhanj.

Before his posting to Malkangiri as district collector, he also worked as sub-collector of Baliguda subdivision in Kandhamal district in the aftermath of the 2008 communal violence in which 38 people were killed.

During his work at Bangiriposi in Mayurbhanj, Krishna established a single window system so that physically challenged people could get their disability certificate under one roof.

He worked day and night to restore peace in the riot-torn Baliguda block in Kandhamal. He realized that economic backwardness and exploitation is the root cause that led to the conflict and helped locals execute their rights, a government officer in Baliguda said.

Krishna, who did his civil engineering from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras in 2001, had dreamt to be part of the developmental process and influence policies of the country.

While many of his IIT batch mates preferred to join corporates and multinational companies, Krishna opted for the civil services.

He could have easily got into the Indian Foreign Service as he secured 28th rank in the civil service examinations, one of his IAS colleagues said.

Krishna was born and brought up at Chanda Nagar, a suburb of Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh. His father is an officer at Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd and mother a Telugu teacher. His elder brother works as a software engineer in the US.

Krishna is married to Chandana, also an engineer. She is preparing for the civil services examination. The couple have an 18-month-old son, Nrupen. Krishna’s father-in-law is S.K. Venugopal, 61, a retired IPS officer.

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