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Convoy attack: Fresh fireworks in IPS row

Mamata described the Centre’s order of releasing the three officers as 'a colourable exercise of power' and 'blatant misuse of an emergency provision of the IPS cadre rule'
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee refused to yield ground, describing the Centre’s order as “a colourable  exercise of power” and “blatant misuse of an emergency provision of the IPS cadre rule”.
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee refused to yield ground, describing the Centre’s order as “a colourable exercise of power” and “blatant misuse of an emergency provision of the IPS cadre rule”.
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Our Bureau   |   Calcutta, New Delhi   |   Published 18.12.20, 02:27 AM

The Union home ministry on Thursday posted three Bengal-cadre IPS officers on central deputation, ignoring the state government’s objections.

The central ministry asked the state to release the three officers immediately in the latest salvo in a standoff that started when stones were thrown at some cars in the convoy of BJP national president J.P. Nadda in Bengal last week.

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Chief minister Mamata Banerjee refused to yield ground, describing the Centre’s order as “a colourable exercise of power” and “blatant misuse of an emergency provision of the IPS cadre rule”.

The Union ministry sent a fresh letter informing the Bengal government of the three officers’ new responsibilities.

The letter said the state had to adhere to the Indian Police Service (Cadre) Rules, 1954, on the posting of the officers. The rule says that “in case of any disagreement, the central government’s decision shall prevail”.

The Union home ministry has informed the state that Bholanath Pandey (SP, Diamond Harbour police district) will be posted as SP, Bureau of Police Research and Development; Rajeev Mishra (ADG, south Bengal) will be posted as IG, ITBP, while Praveen Tripathi (DIG, Presidency Range) will be posted as DIG of the SSB, a source said. 

The three IPS officers were responsible for ensuring security of Nadda when the cars in the convoy were attacked. The IPS officers were directly in charge of the areas where the incident took place, the sources said.

“As punishment, they have been recalled and posted on central deputation for five years,” said a joint secretary in the home ministry.

Mamata tweeted: “The Government of India’s order of central deputation for the serving IPS officers of West Bengal despite the state’s objection is a colourable exercise of power and blatant misuse of emergency provision of IPS cadre rule, 1954.”

The chief minister pointed out that the move was initiated by the Centre to put IAS and IPS officers in Bengal. 

“We wouldn’t allow this brazen attempt by the Centre to control the State machinery by proxy! West Bengal is not going to cow down in front of expansionist and undemocratic forces,” Mamata tweeted.

Senior government officials said that the state government did not indicate its next course of action till late in the evening.

“It is likely to write another letter to the Union home ministry expressing its inability to release the officers. Till now, there is no plan to move court,” a source said on Thursday evening.



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