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Thursday, May 19, 2022

Nashik top cop shifted over azaan controversy

The officer had also issued a directive to religious places in Nashik, instructing them to take permission for usage of loudspeakers by May 3, failing which, legal action will be taken against those violating the rule, including being “externed or detained by police”.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
Updated: April 21, 2022 8:23:01 am
Nashik Police Commissioner Deepak Pandey (File)

Days after Nashik Police Commissioner Deepak Pandey announced that no one will be allowed to play bhajan or songs on loudspeaker within 15 minutes before and after the azaan call in a radius of 100 m of any mosque, the officer was shunted out from his post on Wednesday. This also comes after Pandey earned the government’s censure for writing to Maharashtra DGP Rajnish Sheth, allegedly terming revenue officials and executive magistrate as RDX and detonators.

Pandey was appointed as the special IG of Prevention of Atrocities against Woman (PAW) – deemed to be a side posting.

While Pandey’s announcement had drawn flak from right wing groups, the officer had also issued a directive to religious places in Nashik, instructing them to take permission for usage of loudspeakers by May 3, failing which, legal action will be taken against those violating the rule, including being “externed or detained by police”. The directive was in response to an “ultimatum” given by MNS president Raj Thackeray that repercussions would follow if loudspeakers on mosques were not removed by May 3.

In his letter to the DGP, Pandey had alleged that revenue officials were hand-in-glove with the land mafia and were harassing people. He had sought that powers of revenue officials and executive magistrate to be given to the police.

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The letter had sparked a controversy, with the state Cabinet earlier this month expressing its displeasure over the language used by Pandey in the letter.

Apart from Pandey, the government on Wednesday appointed Suhas Warke, an officer from the 2000-batch, as the new joint commissioner of police (Crime). Milind Bharambe, whom Warke replaced and who oversaw several high-profile cases, is the new IG (Law & Order), a post previously held by Warke.

The government also transferred Thane joint commissioner Suresh Mekala to the state CID, appointed DIG Virendra Mishra as the additional commissioner (North Region) in Mumbai and transferred DCP (Zone III) P S Dahiya to the Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad as DIG. Vinayak Deshmukh, who was the Jalna SP, was made the additional commissioner of police (West Region).

Further, Krishna Prakash, who was the Pimpri-Chinchwad police commissioner, was transferred as IG (VIP Security). Special IG (Prisons) Ankush Shinde will replace Krishna Prakash as the Pimpri-Chinchwad police commissioner.

Ravindra Shisve, who was the joint commissioner of police in Pune, has been transferred as IG of state human rights commission.

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