KOCHI: THE Ernakulam bench of the Central Administrative Tribunal has stayed the government’s order to initiate fresh inquiry against Women Police Battalion Commandant R Nishanthini for the alleged torture of a bank manager in Thodupuzha in July, 2011.
It was alleged that Nishantini, the then Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) of Thodupuzha, and other police personnel brutally assaulted Percy Joseph Desmond, former Union Bank manager.
The bench issued the order on the petition filed by Nishanthini seeking to quash the government’s order.
Advocate Elvin Peter, who appeared for Nishanthini, argued the government issued the order for fresh probe setting aside the earlier inquiry report. The appointment of a new inquiry officer and a presenting officer, in this case, is illegal, he said.
In his final inquiry report, IPS officer Manoj Abraham had concluded the charges against Nishanthini could not be proved.
Citing a Supreme Court verdict, the petitioner claimed the government has no authority to order a fresh probe once an inquiry report had already been submitted. Also, no second investigation can be held against the same person for the same cause of action as per Rule 8 of All India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules, it was pointed out.
Countering the petitioner’s argument, the government pleader said the charges against Nishanthini were very serious and the inquiry by the ADGP was insufficient.
The bench observed that the government has not taken any action despite possessing a detailed inquiry report.