M A I N   N E W S

EC orders transfer of Ambala, Panchkula SPs
No poll duty for new recruits
Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 13
The Election Commission of India today directed the Haryana Government to transfer the district police chiefs of Ambala and Panchkula, Mr Des Raj Singh and Mrs Mamta Singh, respectively, with immediate effect for allegedly violating the model code of conduct.

Incidentally, they are husband and wife.

According to sources in the commission, the two officers have been transferred for recruiting constables after the code of conduct came into force on December 17. The action has come after a two-member inquiry committee set up by the commission to inquire into the alleged violations of the code by the state government, submitted its report.

Acting on the report the commission had earlier ordered the transfer of the Director-General of the Haryana Police, Dr M.S. Malik, and the Director, Public Relations, Mr R.K. Khullar. Now the commission has acted against the two SPs. The possibility of a similar action against certain other district police chiefs cannot be ruled out.

The commission has also asked the government to transfer the SP of Jhajjar, Mr Akil Mohammed and the SP of Rewari, Mr Hanif Qureshi. Both will swap places.

This transfer has been ordered not because of any violation of the code but because Mr Akil Mohammed. had completed his tenure at Jhajjar.

According to informed sources, the Singh couple had reportedly told the inquiry committee that the process of recruitment was started much before the code came into force. They had only accepted the application forms and had not recruited any constable after the code came into force.

However, the inquiry committee, comprising Mr Rajesh Aggarwal, Principal Secretary in the commission, and Mr Afzal Amanullah, Special Election Observer for Haryana, held that in many districts the SPs allowed new recruited Sub-Inspectors and constables to join the force after the code came into force.

As many as 819 constables were recruited at Rewari(for Gurgaon range), Kurukshetra(for Ambala range), Bhiwani(for Hisar range) and at Karnal(for Rohtak range) after December 17 when the code of conduct came into force.

The inquiry report also held that besides constables, cooks, sweepers, barbers and drivers were appointed in the police without following the proper procedure.

The report also said that hundreds of JBT teachers were allowed to join their duty after December 17.

In another directive to ensure fair polling, the Election Commission has directed the state government not to put on election duty those employees, including constables and teachers, who have been inducted into government service on or after December 4 last.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that the Haryana Government will send panels of IPS officers to the Election Commission for appointment of new SPs of Panchkula and Ambala tomorrow after the names have been cleared by the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala.

The commission has allowed Haryana Tourism to hold the annual Surajkund Craft Mela, which opens on February 1 every year, with certain conditions.

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