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DGP appointments: Rajasthan, C'garh, and AP on backfoot

By IndianMandarins- 18 Jan 2019


With the Supreme Court reiterating its earlier order on the appointments of State DGPs, new Congress governments in Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh have found themselves on the backfoot. Also, the TDP government, which pioneered the concept of enacting a state law on the appointment of state DGP, may get into a serious conflict with the SC after having appointed the DGP on the basis of the state law.


After its victory in Rajasthan in December 2018, the In the Congress-led government had removed OP Galhotra and appointed Kapil Garg as the DGP. Galhotra was appointed on November 30, 2017, and had not completed a minimum two years as mandated by the Supreme Court.


Chhattisgarh, on the other hand, appointed DM Awasthi as an Acting DGP on December 20, soon after the Congress took over the reins in the state. Awasthi replaced former DGP AN Upadhyay, who had been the DGP since March 2014.


Since there is no concept of an Acting DGP, the Chhattisgarh government has reportedly clarified that it would follow the SC direction on the due process.


Meantime, the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet Wednesday approved a one-year extension to Punjab DGP Suresh Arora till September 30, 2019. Arora, appointed on October 25, 2015, was due to retire on September 30, 2018. He was given three more months initially, and the Supreme Court allowed him to continue for one more month till January 31, 2019.


Further, the appointment of RP Thakur as AP DGP in June 2018 on the basis of the state law, which stands in violation of the SC order, has become questionable. One has to wait and see how CB Naidu gets out of the mess that he has created for himself while asserting his right to appoint the DGP of his choice.

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