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Surat police chief Asthaana to join CBI as additional director

The other Gujarat cadre IPS officers in the CBI are joint director Keshav Kumar and SP V Chandrashekhar.

Written by Ujjwala Nayudu | Ahmedabad | Published: July 18, 2014 8:48 pm
Rakesh Asthaana Rakesh Asthaana

The Ministry of Home Affairs has cleared appointment of senior IPS officer and additional DGP Rakesh Asthaana as the additional director of the CBI, recently. Currently, Asthaana is the police commissioner of Surat.

The 1984 batch IPS Asthaana’s name was among the frontrunners to be appointed as additional director in the country’s premier investigating agency, among officers of his batch in other states.

Asthaana, who will turn 53 in a few days, also met the CBI Director Ranjit Sinha recently, after the CBI considered his name for the post.

The other Gujarat cadre IPS officers in the CBI are joint director Keshav Kumar and SP V Chandrashekhar.

This is Asthaana’s second stint in the CBI. Earlier, he was posted in CBI, Dhanbad, in 1994 and was one of the key investigators of the “fodder scam”. The trials in some of the cases in the scam are still in court. Former Bihar chief minister and RJD minister Lalu Prasad Yadav and Jagannath Mishra are accused in five cases.

Soon after he was repatriated to his parent cadre in Gujarat, Asthaana headed the SIT appointed by the then Narendra Modi government to probe the Godhra train carnage of February 27, 2002 which had sparked off riots across the state. Asthaana established that the 58 deaths in the S-6 coach of the Sabarmati Express were the result of a conspiracy, a line that was toed later by the SIT appointed by the Supreme Court under former CBI Director R K Raghavan.

However, the “mastermind” of the carnage, named by both SITs – Maulana Husain Umarji – was acquitted by the special riot court and died in 2013, two years later.

Known as a no-nonsense, fearless and a strict policeman, Asthaana has been serving as Surat Police Commissioner from last four years and was recently elected as the president of the IPS Association of Gujarat.

After Asthaana became the president, the association held two important meetings and represented the issue to Chief Minister Anandi Patel of the delayed promotions of the additional DGPs and IGPs in the state. The association also decided to provide help to the families of the police officials arrested in fake encounter cases of Gujarat who have been seeking security and help from years.

Asthaana also supervised the Asaram and Narayan Sai rape cases of Surat sisters and his teams arrested Sai from Haryana. The arrest of Sai and Asaram had sent shock waves across the country when the Surat police exposed the molestation of girls inside ashrams in Surat and Ahmedabad.

Under his guidance, Surat set up the first CCTV surveillance system in the city, which was recently studied by a Central team from Delhi for replicating in other cities.

Commenting on the development, Asthaana told The Indian Express, “My name was given by the state government from among the officers who were willing to go on deputation. When I was asked, I expressed my willingness to go to Delhi and my name was sent to the MHA. I would be pleased to serve there.”

With Asthaana moving to the CBI in New Delhi, the state government is all set to hunt for the new police commissioner in Surat. The additional DGP promotions that are round the corner in the state might bring a new police commissioner for Surat too.

(With inputs from Vijaita Singh in New Delhi)

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  1. T
    Tejas Shah
    Jul 4, 2016 at 6:32 am
    People are fearing from Police,lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;Recently I faced, There is railing at Athwagate towards Ring Road-Majura Gate to facilitate public from accident from merger of traffic. But, there is no way to walk away for pedestrians. They have to jump over the railing or have to walk for about half kilometer. I mostly crossing around 9:30AM and I showed many peoples hurts while they cross railing. lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;Today (04/07/16), I courage to make some space for pedestrians and the SHOW STARTED,lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;One Traffic police came to me and shouted, How you dare to make space; come with me to police station, I suddenly, ready with him, ( I THINK police are for our HELP) and i came to Athwa-Nanpura near Bridge Police cell. There is about SIX-SEVEN officers are ready with file a CRIME case on me. Took my info, bio-data, and shouted, You are only responsible for breaking all railings. Will file crime case on you, Call you employer, will guide him to remove you from your job, will destroy your career. I FEARED, I am at 20, Graduate from GU, living in Hostel near Ambaji Temple. I make their mind to guide what happens to Ladies and elders while they are crossing the railings, as they are unable to walk for half KM.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;No one heard me, As usual, I found them, they are not helping us, they seat for destroying our futures by any way and ried for security of politicians or else. Many thing I want to write but unable to display on public.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;I little cried and tell them, I will wait for your upper police officer. They melted, and tell me to leave.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;I left, but want to tell, I'nk Surat Police as I found, not for helping us, They can not reserve that pride to be a POLICEMAN, A Guard of public.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;Tejas Shahlt;br/gt;tejasjs95(at)gmail(dot)com