VIJAYAWADA: The selection and appointment of a regular Director General of Police (DGP) for the state took an unexpected twist on Saturday with the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) rejecting three of the seven names on the list of IPS officers the state government deems fit for the top job.In a scathing letter, the Central panel told the state government it was against the spirit of the Supreme Court’s judgement to choose officers who were on the verge of retirement for the position that has a fixed two-year tenure as it would adversely affect his/her ability “to perform duty in a professional manner”.
The panel also asked the government how it could seek extension of tenure for in-charge DGP N Sambasiva Rao, who is set to retire on December 31, when it did not deem the officer fit for full-time appointment since July 2016.The IPS officers whom the government recommended for the coveted post are N Sambasiva Rao, M Malakondaiah, S Venkataramana Murthy, RP Thakur, Gautam Sawang, Vinay Ranjan Re and VSK Kaumudi.
However, the UPSC pointed out that three out of the 7 officers, N Sambasiva Rao, S Venkataramana Murthy and M Malakondaiah, are going to retire in a year.The UPSC also questioned the government on why it had not appointed a full-time DGP after the retirement of JV Ramudu in July 2016. The state government, which has not found an officer fit for a full-time appointment since July 2016, now recommending the name of the officers in the panel on the verge of retirement is against the spirit of the Supreme Court judgment in the case of Prakash Singh and others Vs Union of India in 2006.
However, the Andhra Pradesh government is firm on continuing with Sambasiva Rao for another two years and has decided to write another letter to the Centre recommending him for the post.
Sources privy to the move said the state government’s decision to extend Rao’s tenure was in tune with the spirit of the Supreme Court’s judgment as the selection of candidates for the top post was its prerogative.
A retired DGP Express spoke to said that the UPSC had made a critical observation by pointing out that the state had opted out of having a full-time DGP for nearly one-and-half-years.
“Of course, the state government may send names of its choice, but the Centre, which has the right to recommend three names of out of the total seven, will select three from the remaining four and then the state will have no option except to pick one among the suggested names,’’ the retired official told Express.
He, however, admitted that there was a provision to extend the tenure of officials of the Home Department even a day before their retirement.