The newly appointed Punjab DGP Dinkar Gupta has superseded five IPS officers, who are batch-wise senior to him, and by the time he completes the mandatory two-year tenure as police chief by February 2021, another 16 IPS officers of different batches will not be eligible for the top post as they would have less than two years of remainder service left at that time.
Directions laid down by Supreme Court say that in all practicality those officers should be empanelled for DGP post who have clear two years of service left.
The number of such officers who will not be able to have a go at the top post due to the conditions mentioned may increase further if Dinkar gets an extension as DGP after completing his current tenure. His date of retirement is March 2024.
The officer superseded by Dinkar are 1984-batch officer Samant Kumar Goel who is on central deputation, 1985-batch officer Mohammad Mustafa, who is anti-drug Special Task Force DGP, 1985-batch officer Hardeep Singh Dhillon, who is DGP (Law and Order), 1986-batch officer Jasminder Singh, who is DGP (Internal Vigilance Cell) and 1986-batch officer S Chattopadhaya, who is DGP (Punjab State Power Corporation Limited).
While Goel, Dhillon and Jasminder have less than two years of service left, a desirable condition for the appointment of next DGP, Mustafa and Chattopadhaya had over two years of remainder service, but were left out of the reckoning as they did not make it to the list of three-member panel shortlisted by the Union Public Service Commission for consideration for the top post.
And by the time Dinkar completes two years in office, Mustafa and Chattopadhyaya will become ineligible to be considered for the top post as they would retire on February 28, 2021 and March 31, 2022, respectively.
Others who are set to take the hit are Dinkar’s batchmate M K Tiwari, who is due to retire in February 2022.
1988-batch officers Rohit Chaudhary, who is ADGP, Jails, currently, and Iqbal Preet Singh Sahota, who is ADGP, Railways, will also take a hit as their retirement dates are March 2022 and August 2022, respectively.
1991-batch IPS officer Barjinder Kumar Uppal, who is ADGP-cum-Chief Director Vigilance Bureau will also not make it to the eligible candidates as per the guidelines laid down as he is due to retire in May 2022.
A number of officers who joined the police force as Punjab Police Officers, but later made it to IPS were also likely to be left out.
Meanwhile, a senior police officer said a reshuffle at top level posts was likely since officers senior to Dinkar should not ideally report to him and hence they would be shifted out to other wings. For example, Chattopadhyaya who is posted as DGP (PSPCL) does not report to DGP. The officer said an arrangement was likely to be worked out so that officers senior to Dinkar are given independent appointments.