IAS officer who faced heat over misuse of Delhi's Thyagraj Stadium made to retire on ‘track record’

Athletes and coaches were forced to finish their training before 7 PM in order to allow the couple to walk their dog at Thyagraj Stadium in the evening.

Published: 28th September 2023 08:34 AM  |   Last Updated: 28th September 2023 08:34 AM   |  A+A-

Thyagaraj Stadium in New Delhi. ( File Photo)

Thyagaraj Stadium in New Delhi. ( File Photo)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Rinku Dugga, a 1994-batch AGMUT (Arunachal Pradesh-Goa-Mizoram and Union Territory) cadre officer, posted as a principal secretary in Arunachal Pradesh, has been compulsorily retired by the government. Dugga and her batchmate Sanjeev Khirwar, then both posted in Delhi, had come under intense criticism last year in May when it came to the fore that athletes practising on the tracks in a prominent stadium were forced to vacate the facility early just to enable the couple to walk their dog.

The ‘VVIP culture’ had come under heavy criticism from the people and the government had taken note of the incident. After the news broke, the athletes informed the media that they used to train until 8.30 p.m. However, due to the orders allegedly made at the behest of the couple, they were forced to wrap up their training by 7 pm, which caused disruptions to their routines. Khirwar had initially denied the allegations, stating that they were “absolutely incorrect.”

After the controversy erupted, the couple was transferred out of Delhi. An order issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) indicated that Khirwar’s wife, Rinku Dugga, was transferred to Arunachal Pradesh, while her husband was transferred to Ladakh. The transfer was initiated because of the apparent misuse of power and position by them in Delhi, with the incident highlighting the impropriety and elitist behaviour of the couple.

Athletes and coaches were forced to finish their training before 7 PM in order to allow the couple to walk their dog at Thyagraj Stadium in the evening. The transfer was considered a punitive measure as both the officers were posted at a single location under the ‘spouse posting’ option of the Centre and following the transfer, they were required to serve at different locations. Unless there are severe allegations against an administrative officer, no punitive action other than transfer can be taken against an officer.

According to sources, the orders to compulsorily retire Rinku Dugga were issued on the basis of her “track record”. Dugga has been retired compulsorily under the Fundamental Rules (FR) 56(j), Rule 48 of Central Civil Services (CCS) Pension Rules, 1972 after an assessment of her service record, the sources said. The government has the right to retire any government servant “if it is of the opinion that it is in the public interest to do so,” they said.

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