March 4, 2021 9:45:00 am
Hours after the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) granted one year extension to Haryana cadre IPS officer Manoj Yadava on Tuesday, clearing his way to continue as state police chief, the state Home Minister, Anil Vij, shot off a letter to CM Manohar Lal Khattar calling Yadava an “ineligible officer”.
Sources disclosed that Vij, in his letter written to Khattar, has made scathing observations regarding Manoj Yadava’s tenure as state DGP. Vij, according to sources, has mentioned that Yadava does not have adequate command on the officers and he has also cited “mismanagement” of the farmers’ agitation. Citing these reasons, Vij has mentioned that it was not in the interest of the state to continue Yadava as state police chief. Vij has also urged Khattar that Yadava should be continued as DGP only till the procedure of his replacement is completed.
Besides Yadava’s completion of two-year tenure, another primary reason for Home Minister Anil Vij seeking Yadava’s replacement is the DGP’s allegedly unresponsive attitude towards setting up the state wide Narcotics Control Bureau where ADGP rank officer Shrikant Jadhav was posted in July, 2020 as Haryana NCB chief.
Sources disclosed that Jadhav, too, had recently written to the Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Rajeev Arora citing non-cooperative attitude of DGP Manoj Yadava and highlighting multiple aspects regarding Haryana Narcotics Control Bureau that was struggling to take off.
Last week Vij had asked ACS (Home) to initiate procedure of sending panel of IPS officers to replace Yadava. However, on Monday, Khattar had said that the DGP Manoj Yadava will continue as state police chief. On Tuesday, MHA had granted one year extension to Yadava, “till further orders”.
When contacted, DGP Manoj Yadava declined to comment on the entire matter.
Vij pushes for panel for DGP replacement
Meanwhile seeking Yadava’s replacement, Vij has now sent a panel of eight IPS officers to CM Khattar. The panel includes names of officers in the rank of DGP and Additional DGP. As per the norms, officers who have completed 30 years in service and have a pending service of more than six months before retirement can be appointed as state police chief. The panel include names of 1984-batch IPS officer SS Deswal, 1986-batch K K Sindhu. However, both have less than six months of service left as they are due to retire on August 31, this year.
Besides these two, 1988-batch PK Aggarwal, 1989-batch Mohd Akil and RC Mishra, 1990-batch Shatrujit Kapoor and Deshraj Singh are also in the race. Their names have also been included in the panel.
Row over Haryana NCB
Shrikant Jadhav was appointed as ADGP (Narcotics Control Bureau) to launch a massive crackdown on organised drug-cartels across the state. Sources told The Indian Express that Jadhav had been writing to the DGP seeking adequate infrastructure, vehicles, weaponry, staff, interception facilities, funds, an office, specific police stations etc. but failed to get any substantial cooperation from Yadava’s side. Jadhav, according to sources, has also recently communicated to the Home Department that he was neither given officers of his choice, nor given the adequate infrastructure to fulfil the purpose for which the NCB was set up by the state government.
On the lines of a Special Task Force (STF) in Punjab, to have a state-wide NCB in Haryana was proposed in December, 2019 by DGP Manoj Yadava. It was subsequently approved by the government. It came into existence in June, 2020 and Jadhav was appointed as its chief in July, 2020.
Sources told The Indian Express that Jadhav had written at least over 70 letters including reminders to DGP Manoj Yadava seeking latest state-of-the-art interception facilities (command and control), posting of selected DIG/Senior Superintendents of Police/ Additional Superintendents of Police/District Attorneys; police personnel to execute the raids and searches, ministerial staff for office work, vehicles, office building space, funds etc. but failed to get any favourable response.
While initially, it was proposed to have 12 dedicated NCB police stations across Haryana, Jadhav after taking over had suggested that there should be at least 17 dedicated police stations across the state. However, it was not done. Sources added that Jadhav had also sent a proposal for having a latest interception facility installed at NCB’s headquarters worth Rs. 3.5-4 crore. However, the same was not approved and kept pending. He redrafted another proposal to have a basic interception facility to be installed in Madhuban, where NCB could have its temporary headquarter, but the same too was not given to him.
Sources disclosed that after various reminders sent by Jadhav, it was only two months ago when a SP-rank officer was given to him. “He too was given a condemned vehicle, which had already done about 1.5 lakh km and was in a bad shape. The SP had been using his own vehicle,” a senior officer privy to the developments told The Indian Express. NCB was also allotted the staff in bits and parts while rather than having a dedicated District Attorney for NCB, the additional charge was given to District Attorney, Karnal.
Sources disclosed that Jadhav had also prepared detailed interrogation reports that were to be filled by the Investigating Officers at the time of arresting the accused arrested in NDPS cases. However, it too were not duly enforced across the state.
Sources added that Jadhav, in his letter to ACS (Home) Rajeev Arora has mentioned that the DGP Manoj Yadava was apparently not interested that NCB should be setup under him (Jadhav). He also added that Yadava was neither replying to his text or WhatsApp messages.
In his letter to Arora, Jadhav also quoted a WhatsApp message that he had sent to Yadava. The message – “Gm Sir, I wish to make some submissions about HNCB. I have no personal interest what so ever. I never asked for posting nor was asked if interested. But, if a State level bureau is to be set up on a serious matter of drug abuse, it has to be a effective set up. Initial period is crucial in forming the character of new set up, hence DIG, SP, DSP, Inspector should be given according to the request made. Any decision about HNCB should not be taken looking at me, but in the interest of HNCB. It is requested to make HNCB a force to reckon with, rather than yet another wing of police. A modern set up with the best of gadgets, vehicles etc. HNCB should be directly under your leadership. Its your baby. Haryana is going to remember you for this forever. Independent interception for HNCB is a necessity and I have no personal agenda. Merging districts narcotics cells with HNCB may be considered to start with. Regards.”
In his letter to Arora, Jadhav also apprised him that if DGP Manoj Yadava wanted, HNCB could have been set up within a month’s time. However, even after nine months, it was working with barely one vehicles and from one room where the ADGP, SP and other skeletal staff is working.
Sources said that Jadhav apprised Arora how he was not given any officer of his choice and the one SP who was allotted to HNCB too was not given any office to work from. He also added that in the name of office staff, a DCO was allotted from Bhondsi, who was suffering from cancer and died within one month of joining HNCB.
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