By the Way

Violating the rules

Punjab has faced two terror attacks–Dinanagar, in July last year, and the more recent one on the Air Force base in Pathankot–in about six months. The two incidents prompted an analysis of the working of the Punjab Police. The Home Ministry is worried about the way the Punjab government is handling the state police. It is revealed the Home Ministry has indicated caution is in order about a tendency to appoint promotee police officers to head most districts of Punjab on posts earmarked for Indian Police Service (IPS) personnel. This is allegedly in violation of rules. In all of Punjab’s eight border districts, including Pathankot and Gurdaspur, no single direct recruited IPS officer has been posted either as Senior Superintendent of Police or Commissioner of Police (SSP or CP), according to sources. Only three directly recruited IPS officers are working in these positions in Hoshiarpur, Bathinda and Muktasar. The state has 141 IPS officers, including promotees, working in different posts against the total strength of 172, according to the Home Ministry. Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal’s stand is, Don’t question the appointments, let the DGP decide who is the best person to post where. But everybody knows how a DGP works in the state. The rule of the Home Ministry states, “the state government is supposed to take permission from the Centre for posting of a non-cadre officer in cadre posts beyond three months.” But Punjab has never sought such permission.

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