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PPS officers removed from cadre posts
Maneesh Chhibber
Our High Court Correspondent

DGP in the dark

The Punjab DGP Mr A.A. Siddiqui did not have any idea about the transfers even till late this evening. Attending a two-day workshop on policing organised by the Institute of Development and Communication (IDC) in Mohali, Mr Siddiqui told newsmen that he had received no orders from the government to transfer PPS officers.

Chandigarh, December 12
Just one day prior to the hearing of the contempt case in the controversy over continuation of Punjab Police Service (PPS) officers on cadre posts meant for IPS officers, including SSPs, the Punjab Government today removed all PPS officers from the posts of district police chiefs.

According to sources, faced with the possibility of its top bureaucrats, including Chief Secretary Jai Singh Gill and Principal Secretary (Home) Sanjit Kumar Sinha as well as Director-General of Police A.A. Siddiqui, being at the receiving end when the contempt case hearing resumes tomorrow, the government issued the transfer orders today.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court had sometime back issued notice for contempt to Mr Gill, Mr A.A. Siddiqui and Mr Sinha, asking them to explain why its orders to fill cadre posts with IPS officers only had not been implemented.

The notice was issued on a contempt petition moved by IPS officer Neelabh Kishore, seeking action against the officers for deliberate and willful disobedience of High Court orders dated August 9, 2004. In its order, a Division Bench had directed the Punjab Government to remove all non-cadre officers from cadre posts and submit compliance report in this matter.

Today, the Government removed all PPS officers posted on cadre posts. As per available information, Mr B. Chander Shekhar has been posted as SSP, Faridkot, in place of Mr M.S. Chinna.

Other IPS officers posted as SSPs are Mr S.S. Srivastava (Ferozepore), Mr H.S. Chahal (Sangrur), Mr Ishwar Singh (Gurdaspur), Mr Satish K. Asthana (Jalandhar), Mr Arunpal Singh (Kapurthala), Mr Gautam Cheema (Mansa), Ms V. Neerja (Moga), Mr R.P.S. Brar (Amritsar), Ms Vibhu Raj (Majitha), Mr Varinder Kumar (Fatehgarh Sahib), Mr L.K. Yadav (Muktsar), Mr Paramjit Singh Grewal (Tarn Taran) and Mr Jatinder Kumar Jain (Batala).

Mr Ram Singh, who is currently SSP, Batala, has been posted as SP (Communication and Telecommunications), Punjab Police. He will be based in Chandigarh. Mr Kultar Singh has been shifted as SSP, Amritsar, to Commandant, 82nd Battalion, Punjab Armed Police, while Mr A.K. Pandey, a CRPF officer, has been posted in the Punjab Chief Ministerís security.

The posting orders of the PPS officers removed from cadre posts will be issued later.

Sources said that Ludhiana SSP Narinderpal Singh and Ropar SSP Surinderpal Singh have not been touched in the reshuffle. Both are promotee IPS officers.

All officers have been directed to join immediately on their new posts.

It is also learnt that Chief Secretary Gill had taken a strong line on the issue of removal of PPS officers from cadre posts and had pushed the case of IPS officers.

The Punjab Government had resisted the removal of PPS officers from cadre posts despite court orders, forcing IPS officer Neelabh Kishore to seek initiation of contempt proceedings against those responsible for implementing court orders.

His lawyer, advocate Gurminder Singh, had brought to the courtís notice that despite the fact that no stay has been granted by the Supreme Court, the respondent-officers have failed to implement the order.

Mr Gurminder Singh had told the bench of Mr Justice Virender Singh that nine non-cadre (PPS) officers continue to occupy the posts of district police chiefs while another PPS officer is Commandant of 82nd Battalion of the Punjab Armed Police.
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