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Meet to set arrest limits Rush to avert replay

Calcutta, Dec. 3: The director-general of police will hold a meeting with senior officers tomorrow to send the message that they should not “exceed their brief”, the advice to come within days of K. Jayaraman being relieved of his duties as Siliguri commissioner on similar grounds.

The meeting by G.M.P. Reddy is being seen as an effort by the government to send the message that acts similar to that of Jayaraman, who had arrested Malda district magistrate G. Kiran Kumar on Saturday for alleged funds misuse during his tenure as the CEO of the Siliguri-Jalpaiguri Development Authority, would not be appreciated if it amounted to embarrassing the administration.

“The DG holding meetings with senior officers is a usual affair. What is unusual is that this is the second such meeting in a fortnight, during which there has not been any major deterioration of the law and order situation,” a home department source said.

Home department sources said the meeting, to be held through video conferencing, was likely to lay down certain unwritten codes of conduct for police officers while dealing with cases of financial irregularities or serious crimes in which senior officials are found to be involved.

In case a senior administrative official is accused of involvement in a cognisable offence, police officers will be told to speak to superiors first.

Reddy had informally conveyed the message to some deputy inspectors-general who had met him in his chamber in Nabanna yesterday afternoon. After the meeting, Reddy told Jayaraman to report to the police directorate during his time on compulsory waiting.

“The officers were told during the meeting not to make hurried arrests unless it was justified,” an officer said.

According to him, Jayaraman could have waited for the probe to be completed and named the DM in the chargesheet, which would have been enough for the election commission to remove Kiran Kumar. Rolls revision is on and the district magistrates are on deputation to the poll panel.

A section of officers, however, believes that Jayaraman did nothing wrong by arresting Kiran Kumar. “A lot of officers think that Jayaraman, who is well aware of the rules, did the right thing,” an officer said.