Odisha government starts process for new DGP selection

Sources say the government might want make a statement by choosing a woman officer as DGP which, if it happens, will be a first for Odisha.

Published: 19th November 2023 09:11 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th November 2023 09:11 AM   |  A+A-

Police, Crime, Cops

For representational purposes

Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Odisha government on Saturday set in motion the appointment process of the new director general of police (DGP) after formally notifying that incumbent police chief Sunil Bansal’s tenure will not be extended.A notification by Home department said Bansal will be allowed to retire as DGP on December 31 upon completion of his two-year term.

Before Bansal was selected for the top post in December 2021, the government had sent names of all eligible officers (having 30 years of experience) to Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
However, on September 22 last, UPSC amended the guidelines and allowed officers with 25 years of experience to be appointed as DGP against the earlier requirement of a minimum 30 years of service.
This would mean the list could have names of eight officers starting from 1988 till 1990 batch who are currently in the DG rank in the state. The 1988 batch has only one officer, Arun Ray who is currently director of printing, stationery and publication.

The next batch has AM Prasad, B Radhika and SM Narvane, all from the 1989 batch. Pranabindu Acharya, another officer from 1989, is unlikely not be included as he has less than six months of service from the cut-off date of December 31, 2023. Acharya will retire in May, 2024.Narvane currently serves as officer on special duty in the Home department, while Radhika is posted as ADG, Sashastra Seema Bal in New Delhi. She is slated to return from central deputation by end of the month.

From the 1990 batch, YB Khurania, Sudhansu Sarangi and Arun Kumar Sarangi are also in the DG rank. Khurania is special director general of Border Security Force’s Western Command in Chandigarh. Sudhansu and Arun are serving as DG (fire services) and Director, Biju Patnaik State Police Academy respectively.While government will have to walk a tightrope on choosing the next police chief, it will also have to factor in several key issues. With the general elections not very far, the government will carefully select the new DGP given the enormity of the political event.

Sources say the government might want make a statement by choosing a woman officer as DGP which, if it happens, will be a first for Odisha. It will also align with the women empowerment agenda of the Biju Janata Dal government.At the same time, it will also have to be cautious of the fact that no Odia officer has made it to the top post after Prakash Mishra.

The committee to appoint the DGP is headed by UPSC chairman, Union Home secretary, state’s chief secretary and DGP and one of the chiefs of Central Armed Police Forces nominated by the Ministry of Home Affairs who is not from the same state cadre.“During the committee’s meeting, detailed discussions are held to select deserving contenders and rarely there is disagreement among the members. The panel mostly selects the names of three most senior officers unless there are any adverse reports against them,” said a former Odisha DGP.

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