THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: While gold smugglers have exposed chinks in the state’s internal security apparatus right under the nose of the police headquarters, the post of internal security chief has been lying vacant for nearly three weeks. The government’s reluctance, or delay, in appointing an eligible candidate has left officers puzzled.
On June 19, the state government transferred Jayanath J, SP, internal security, to an insignificant post of commandant, Kerala Armed Police (KAP) III battalion. He was also given the additional charge of the KAP V battalion. Interestingly, the officer was shifted from a cadre post to a battalion commandant’s post, which is normally given to non-IPS, or young or conferred IPS officers. At times, deputy commandants of the battalions are given the charge of commandant. Jayanath’s transfer happened at a time when he was expected to be promoted as DIG on the completion of 13 years of service. The post continues to lie vacant when internal security is at stake.
As internal security chief is a cadre post, a new posting requires ratification from the Centre. In an election year, the Covid-19 pandemic has demanded increased vigil in security matters.
“Though gold smuggling falls under the economic offence category, it affects the state’s security on many counts. Racketeers have been smuggling large quantities of gold under the garb of diplomatic courier through the Thiruvananthapuram airport. They have not only hoodwinked the Customs but also the state police,” said an officer, who chose to remain anonymous.
When TNIE contacted, Vinod Kumar ADGP (Intelligence) refused to comment.