Apex court asked to review directives on police reform
New Delhi : The central government has asked the Supreme Court to modify its directives on police reform, including on fixed two-year tenures for police chiefs of different states and the Central Para Military Forces (CPMF).
The government, which says that implementing the court's orders in totality was not feasible, has sought a review of the apex court's Sep 22, 2006, and Jan 11, 2007, orders for a fixed two-year tenure for the director generals of police (DGPs) of various states and CPMFs.
It has also pointed out administrative problems in including the CPMF chiefs on the National Security Commission, which is to be constituted by the government under the apex court's directive.
The government pointed out its problems in a review application and an affidavit filed in the apex court's registry last week Friday.
The review application stated that though the government would ideally like to have a fixed two-year tenure for the police chiefs, it would not be possible to implement this directive.
Explaining its reasons, it said that at the time of considering the names for appointment as DGP of a state or the CPMF the government comes across very few officers with full two years tenure left in the service.
Accordingly, if an officer with less than two years of service left is given extension to ensure compliance with the court's direction, many among the serving officers would retire without becoming police chief in their state cadre.
This, besides being an injustice to the senior police officials, would also work to demoralise them, said the government.
Citing latest data valid till January 2007, the central government said it has merely 40 police officers left from between the 1968 and 1972 batch whose names were being considered for appointment as DGPs.
Of these officers, just 15 have service tenures exceeding two years and eight of them are ready to accept the deputation in the central government as DGP of various CPMFs.
In an affidavit filed before the apex court, Cabinet Secretary B.K. Chaturvedi pointed to administrative problems in including the CPMF chiefs on the National Security Commission.
The cabinet secretary said as the proposed National Security Commission would be mandated with the task of selecting police chiefs of CPMFs and often one CPMF chief appointed was the chief of another paramilitary force, it would lead to a piquant situation as it would entail having an officer on the panel considering his own name for the appointment.
Seeking exclusion of the CPMFs chiefs from the membership of the National Security Commission, Chaturvedi has proposed that the commission be named as Central Committee for Paramilitary Force instead.
He said the government had even constituted such a committee headed by Home Minister Shivraj Patil and comprising four senior serving police officers and two retired officers.
On other matters of police reform, the government said that it is an ongoing process and was pursuing it with full vigour.