SUJATA SAUNIK, Principal Secretary, Department of Financial Reforms, Government of Maharashtra.
As head of Financial Reforms in Maharashtra, Sujata is highly involved in key strategic interests of the state such as determining monetary policy on state-sponsored guarantees, state fiscal health enhancement through buy-back/switching of government securities, and state risk management and minimizing debt exposure through adherence to Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act (FRBM). She leads state projects on designing governing architectures and policy frameworks for effective, transparent and seamless disbursement of funds and tracking expenditures against department-specific outcome indicators, enabling higher fiscal efficacy. Her efforts directly impact the state’s income and the government’s ability to fund several key infrastructure and social sector projects across the state. She also monitors expenditures of various departments, including overseeing their spend-reports, such as Agriculture, Irrigation, Industry, Energy, Finance etc. and decides on policy matters for fund raising through loans and bonds, managing assets and liabilities, and cases of funds, cash and investments of dissolved assets.
In her past role with the Department of Health, Government of Maharashtra, she initiated the campaign on Right to women hood and Right to mother hood through the health networks and through media. It was followed by a campaign on Child survival growth and development.
Regular technical updating and discussions on the newer approaches to programming for adolescent, women and children have been part of the review resulting in the field functionaries and technical teams to provide the best quality services. Nutrition especially the issue of stunting is now been the core of the health agenda.
First ever comprehensive policy on Maternal and Infant and Young Child Nutrition is being led by the Public Health Department under her leadership.
Her leadership led to the special initiative – Kayapalat or Transforming Primary Health care – reaching the last mile.
Prior to this she served four years as Advisor and Joint Secretary, National Disaster Management Authority, Ministry of Home Affairs, Govt. of India handling a range of responsibilities- office administration of the authority including setting the agenda for high level meetings with the Prime Minister and Chairman of the Authority and the Advisory Board. Handled the training and international deployment and participation of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), including United Nations International Search and Rescue Group (INSAARAG) and Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) exercises in Agra and Tunis. Subsequently moved to the Plan and Policy division in May 2011 and worked on the preparation of state and district disaster management plans, capacity building and training of key stakeholders
She was on deputation to the United Nations mission in Kosovo from 2000-2005. Worked as Municipal Administrator of the second largest town in Kosovo-Prizren, heading an international team of officers from various countries to help in the reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts in this war torn province of ex- Yugoslavia. During this assignment, implemented large number of projects for construction of housing and public infrastructure like schools, hospitals, water and sanitation works, markets and community buildings in two municipalities of Kosovo- Prizren and Obilic. She was also on deputation to the UN mission in Cambodia for one year from June, 1992 to July 1993 to help in voter registration and conduct of the first democratic elections in Cambodia [Kampuchea], South East Asia.
Ms. Sujata Saunik belongs to the 1987 batch of Indian Administrative Service from Maharashtra cadre. She completed her early schooling, college and university from Chandigarh and was a gold medalist at Punjab University (Masters in History).