New Delhi: Bhaskar Khulbe, the former civil servant and confidante of PM Narendra Modi, has once again reached the Prime Minister’s Office in the capacity of advisor to the Prime Minister. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the appointment of Khulbe that gives him a rank as that of secretary. Along with Khulbe, IAS Amarjeet Sinha, also from the 1983 batch of officers has been appointed as an advisor in the Prime Minister’s Office.

Khulbe, who retired from PMO last year as secretary of the PM, is known to have worked very closely with PM Narendra Modi. Khulbe had also received an extension of six months before his retirement owing to his proximity to the work of PM Modi.

Earlier, there were rumours that he would be appointed as additional principal secretary to the PM after PK Mishra was elevated to the position of principal secretary to the Prime Minister. However, PMO has not appointed any officer in this post yet.

The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of positions to the rank and scale of secretary to strengthen the administrative setup in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

Khulbe is from the West Bengal cadre and Sinha is from the Bihar cadre of officers of the 1983 batch.

Khulbe held the position in the PMO almost four years before his superannuation. He had also taken charge as additional secretary in the PMO since the formation of the Modi government in 2014.

Khulbe once knew an officer close to West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee and was a bridge between the state government and Central government as a resident and investment commissioner.

He could now play a crucial role in the forthcoming Assembly election scheduled for 2021, through the formation of the Centre sponsored schemes, especially for West Bengal.