Punjab DGP rank officers Mohammad Mustafa and S Chatopadhyaya have reached the final stage of their legal recourse against the appointment of 1987-batch IPS officer Dinkar Gupta as the state police chief.
After going through the tedious process of challenging the appointment first at the CAT level and then at the HC level (they won at CAT but lost in HC), they have petitioned the SC against the Punjab and Haryana HC verdict of November 6, 2020, that upended the CAT judgment and upheld the government's decision to appoint Gupta as Punjab Police chief.
Admitting the petition, the Apex Court on December 09, 2020, initiated the process to issue the notice to the Union government, the Union Public Service Commission(UPSC), Punjab government, Punjab DGP Dinkar Gupta, and ex-DGP Suresh Arora to ask them to file their replies to the petition of Mustafa and Chatopaddhyaya.
Both petitioners are reportedly senior to Gupta and have argued that the due process for the appointment of Punjab's police chief was not followed in gross disregard to the SC directions on the matter.
The petitioners have pointed out that Mustafa is the only IPS officer in the country to have received four gallantry awards but was not selected by the empanelment committee as it chose to cherry-pick five core policing areas so as to favor certain candidates in complete disregard of the Supreme Court guidelines.
Officers say that if an officer of Mustafa's caliber had not been chosen as the police chief in a BJP-run state government, all the secular parties would have been seen indulging in hurling their favorite charges. But all of them are mum now.
(By Rakesh Ranjan & M K Shukla)