Opposition flays PDA Govt’s move to replace State DGP

Opposition flays PDA Govt’s move to  replace State DGP
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Kohima April 10: Nagaland Home Minister Y. Patton’s letter asking the Union Government to recall State Director General of Police (DGP) Rupin Sharma has generated outrage among opposition parties and concerned citizens in the State.
The Naga People’s Front (NPF) and the Congress have slammed the Deputy Chief Minister accusing him of being a “corrupt politician” wanting to get rid of a sincere and dedicated cop who has no intention to compromise with corruption.
Patton who has been tainted with alleged large scale backdoor appointment in the Police Department has been under the scanner of the public, civil society organisations and students.
Political parties have unequivocally condemned Patton’s letter and gave a clean chit to Sharma as a clean man who will not compromise with corruption.
“The Naga People’s Front (NPF) is alarmed at the move made by Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister Y. Patton to replace the present Director General of Police, Nagaland ostensibly over the latter refusing to make backdoor appointments in the Police Department as desired by the former,” said the NPF in a press release issued today.
The NPF said Patton has a track record of flouting all norms and procedures to get his candidates appointed or allotted contract and supply works. “His wayward behaviour whilst running the administration was a major source of embarrassment to the last Ministry and he was dropped from the Ministry, albeit at the fag end of the tenure and severely reprimanded,” it stated.
The Congress party said it was nothing surprising the way the State Government has been running for the last more than 15 years. “Nothing surprising the way these people have been running the affairs of the State into 16th year,” the Congress said.
“The word merit has no place in their dictionary but majority of our people keeps voting for them in the hope that they also benefit from this rogue system of governance,” Congress sources said.
The Congress alongside students, Naga civil organisations have been demanding action against rampant backdoor appointments made by Patton in the last NPF led Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) Government. All went to deaf ears then.
The NPF went on to add that Deputy Chief Minister having such a track record has been tasked with crucial and important department like Home by the PDA alliance which has become a worrisome for the people of the State.
“The only consolation, though, was that an upright, innovative and capable office like Rupin Sharma IPS was made the DGP and Naga people, cutting across political party lines and without bias of favour, were confident that the officer would ensure rule of law and not succumb to pressures from corrupt powers that be. Indeed the innovative changes that the incumbent DGP had introduced in the Police Department are remarkable and he had endeared himself to the people, especially the citizens through his interactions with them on social media,” the release said.
“Patton’s discomfiture with such an incorruptible and impartial officer is understandable considering that he, Patton, is known for nepotism, favouritism and unscrupulous style of functioning,” it said.
Terming the excuses furnished by Patton to the Union Home Minister are flimsy and clearly exposes the malafide intentions of the Deputy Chief Minister, the NPF asked the PDA Government to rescind Patton’s attempts to replace the incumbent DGP. Rather than look into the number of years an officer has served, he should consider the performance index of the officer, it said.
The NPF also asked the PDA Government must keep in mind the ruling of the Supreme Court on a PIL in 2006 in the case of Prakash Singh Vs Union of India where it noted that “The Director General of Police of the State… once he has been selected for the job, he should have a minimum tenure of at least two years irrespective of his date of superannuation.”
The release said the NPF is not against the proposed officer to replace the incumbent, but it is just that the “ill-designs” of the Deputy Chief Minister/ Home Minister “and the kind of changes he has in mind to usher in will surely not augur well for the department or the State.”
Chief Minister, Neiphiu Rio on March 24 has also written a letter to Union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh to depute an experience and suitable cop to head the Police Department in the State and recommended the name of Lungriading of AM-1990.
Chief Secretary Temjen Toy has also written a letter to Union Home Secretary to recall the DGP stating that he does not possess the requisite experience necessary for being posted as DGP. “Further, of his 26 years of experience in service he has served primarily in the Cabinet Secretariat (RAW), Ministry of External Affairs and in the UN Mission at Kosovo. His experience of serving the State is very limited with just about one year as SP of Peren district” the letter stated.
“This inexperience led to challenges and issues in the conduct of State Assembly Elections in February 2018 and somehow we were able to ensure that the elections were conducted without any major law and order situation. Given the overall situation in Nagaland as well as the challenges of policing in the State, it is imperative that an officer of sufficient seniority who is aware of the local issues is posted as DGP of the State Police,” the letter added.
The Home Minister wrote a letter to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on March 28 and Chief Secretary wrote letter to Union Home Secretary on March 27.
Sharma is not new to the Police Department as he was tasked to look after corruption cases in the state in State Departments. He could crack several corruption cases in the past.
While the State government wanted to let DGP Sharma pack his bags and leave sources said the Centre was unlikely to remove him due to his good track record as a cop in different capacities.
(Page News Service)