In a major pre-Lok Sabha election police shake up in the state,the state government on Wednesday transferred and promoted 62 cops,including 47 IPS officers. The city police in Surat and Rajkot are set to get new chiefs because of the reshuffling.
While senior Gujarat cop,Deepak Swaroop,ADGP,has been appointed the new police commissioner of Surat,IGP Geetha Johri,the convener of the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT),has been promoted to the rank of ADGP and posted as police commissioner of Rajkot.
ADGP S S Khandvawala has been promoted to the rank of DG and made director of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB),relieving the Gujarat top cop,P C Pande,from the additional charge of the Director ACB.
A 1973 batch IPS officer,Khandvawala is the senior most contender for the office of the state police DGP after Pande retires on March 31. Whether Pande will be given an extension or not is,however,not known yet.
The other two ADGPs who were promoted as DGs are,Surat police commissioner R M S Brar and Ahmedabad police commissioner O P Mathur
Both Brar and Mathur are from the 1975 IPS batch. While there is no final word on whether Mathur (who will retire along with Pande) will get an extension or not,Brar,who has been made the Commandant General,Home Guard,is being considered as the second most suitable contender in the race for Gujarat DGP after Khandvawala.
Rajkot police commissioner,S K Sinha,who is one batch junior to Brar and Mathur,has been posted as ADGP (law and order).
Apart from Johri,five more IGPs have been promoted to the rank of ADGPs. These senior cops include IGP Surat range,Shivanand Jha; IGP (law and order),Amitabh Pathak; Joint Director (Police Academy,Karai) IGP F M Guard; IGP,Rajkot range,V V Rabbari; and IGP Vadodara range,Pramod Kumar. Five IGPs including K Kumarswami (1978 batch),H P Singh (1980 batch),P P Thakur (1979 batch) and S T Chitturi (1982 batch) have been superseded in ADGP promotions.
Two SPs who have been promoted to DIGs are Bhavnagar SP,Manoj Shashidharan and SP,SRP,P K Valera. While Shashidharan has been posted as DIG,Rajkot range,Valera has been made the DIG,Armed unit.
Along with 47 IPS officers,the reshuffle also includes 15 GPS officers,who have been promoted as SPs.
Interestingly,three of these,Dy SP,P I Mal,Dy SP,V V Chaudhary and Dy SP,G V Barot are members of the SIT team which is further investigating into nine most gruesome cases of the 2002 Gujarat riots.