Chandigarh, July 30
Punjab governor Banwarilal Purohit on Saturday highlighted the “frequent” changes of officers to the posts of chief secretary, director general of police and advocate general in the state in the last 10 months and also expressed concern over the drug menace.
Purohit said he got first-hand knowledge about the problem of drugs during his recent visits to the border districts of Punjab and also received feedback that certain police officials in these districts are hand in glove with drug smugglers.
The governor was addressing a national-level conference on drug trafficking and national security organised by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) at the Punjab Raj Bhawan here. Union Home Minister Amit Shah was the key speaker at the event. Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann was also present on the occasion.
“I met sarpanches, social workers and what I learnt was a matter of great concern,” Purohit said while referring to his visits to the districts bordering Pakistan.
He accused the neighbouring country of trying to push drugs into India.
“You will be surprised to know that the feedback that I got was that the police stations in these border districts are involved with the smugglers,” the governor said, adding that there are “black sheep” in the police force who need to be identified.
Purohit said he has come to know through the media that school children are taking drugs these days.
“For me, the subject of concern is who should I speak to. I have no hesitation in saying that after I came here, three chief secretaries were changed. I talk to one chief secretary, brief him, make him understand and then, he is changed,” the governor said.
Five DGPs were changed in Punjab in 10 months, he pointed out, adding, “Make one (DGP) understand, and then the second one...as a governor, what else can I do.” Purohit also said five AGs were changed in the recent past.
However, he said his relations with the chief minister are very good.
V K Janjua was appointed as the chief secretary this month, replacing Anirudh Tewari, who was appointed to the post in September last year after Vini Mahajan was shunted out.
Indian Police Service (IPS) officer Gaurav Yadav was appointed as the DGP this month in the place of V K Bhawra, who had taken charge from Siddharth Chattopadhyaya in January.
The previous Congress government, led by chief minister Charanjit Singh Channi, had appointed IPS officer Iqbal Preet Singh Sahota as the DGP, replacing Dinkar Gupta, who was the state police head when Amarinder Singh was the chief minister.
A few days ago, senior advocate Anmol Rattan Sidhu announced his resignation from the AG’s post and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government decided to appoint Vinod Ghai in his place.
Sidhu was appointed as the AG in March. The post had then fallen vacant following the resignation of Deepinder Singh Patwalia after the Assembly poll results were declared and the AAP came to power in Punjab.
Patwalia became the AG in November last year, following the resignation of APS Deol from the post. Deol was appointed as the state’s top law officer in September last year after Atul Nanda tendered his resignation in the wake of Amarinder Singh’s unceremonious exit as chief minister.
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