Widening the scope of operations of the anti-drug Special Task Force chief, Additional Director General of Police Harpreet Singh Sidhu, the Punjab government on Friday gave him the additional charge as ADGP (Border) as home department issued transfer and new posting orders for 12 Indian Police Service (IPS) officers and eight Punjab Police Service (PPS) officers.
Four ADGP-level officers were promoted as DGPs, taking the total number of DGPs to 11 and in the process making the Punjab Police a top-heavy force, this despite the fact that DGP (Prison Reforms) Sanjiv Gupta retired on Friday.
Four PPS officers were posted as Senior Superintendents of Police districts where preferably IPS officers are supposed to be posted.
Giving additional charge of ADGP (border) to the STF chief is being seen as another case of elevation of Sidhu in the Punjab Police. As STF chief, Sidhu had been directly reporting to Chief Minister Office, with State DGP Suresh Arora reportedly not in the loop.
The orders by Home department on Friday said Inspector General (Border Zone, Amritsar) and Inspector General (Bathinda Zone) will report to Sidhu and work under his supervision. “For his duty as ADGP (Border), he will be reporting through DGP Punjab. However, as ADGP Special Task Force he will report to the Chief Minister Office,” read the orders.
The Punjab Government had been blaming cross-border smuggling of drugs from Pakistan for the drug problem in Punjab.
Meanwhile, ADGP (Intelligence) Dinkar Gupta was promoted as DGP (Intelligence) by creating a new post in the DGP rank and keeping the cadre post of ADGP (Intelligence) in abeyance.
ADGP (Investigation, Lokpal) C S R Reddy was promoted as DGP (Investigation, Lokpal) by upgrading the ex-cadre post of ADGP Investigation, Lokpal. ADGP-cum-MD Punjab Police Housing Corporation (PPHC) M K Tiwari was promoted as DGP-cum-MD PPHC. ADGP Provisioning and Modernisation V K Bhawra was promoted as DGP with additional charge of Information Technology and Telecommunications by upgrading the ex-cadre post.
PPS officer Opinderjit Singh Ghuman replaced IPS officer Deepak Hilori as Batala SSP as Hilori was shifted to Intelligence wing where Ghuman was earlier posted.
Another PPS officer Raj Bachan Singh Sandhu, who had been aide de camp to Punjab Governor, replaced IPS officer Jagdale Nilambari as Rupnagar SSP. IPS officer Harjeet Singh, the Tarn Taran SSP, was shifted as Barnala SSP and PPS officer Darshan Singh Mann was given the charge as Tarn Taran SSP.
Barnala SSP Baljot Singh Rathore has been posted as DIG GRP Patiala. Another PPS officer Parampal Singh has been posted as Amritsar (Rural) SSP, replacing IPS officer J Elanchezhian who has been shifted as Hoshiarpur SSP.
Parampal was earlier given the officiating charge of Amritsar (Rural) SSP when Elanchezhian was on a leave.
IPS officer Harcharan Singh Bhullar, who was serving as Hoshiarpur SSP, has been shifted as AIG (Crime, Bureau of Investigation).