The race for the post of the next director general of police (DGP) of Maharashtra has begun with incumbent Subodh Jaiswal likely to leave for his new posting as the CISF DG by the end of this week. The Appointments Committee in an order approved his new posting on Thursday.
Of the next four senior most IPS officers in the state, two 1987-batch officers – Bipin Bihari and Surendra Pandey – will retire in the next two months.
“As per Supreme Court guidelines, an officer who at least has a minimum of six months left to retire has to be considered for the post. Technically, it should rule out Bihari and Surendra Pandey,” said an official from the state home department.
This would make senior most officer Sanjay Pandey (1986 batch) and Hemant Nagrale (1987 batch) – both set to retire in 2022 – as the frontrunners for the post.
The official said that apart from these officers, the state government is likely to also include officers from the 1988 batch when it recommends names of DG-rank officers to the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
“Some 1988 batch officers like Param Bir Singh and Rajnish Seth are already holding sensitive posts like that of the Mumbai Police commissioner and DG of Anti-Corruption Bureau, respectively, and may not be moved. The government is not too keen on some of the other officers. It may eventually be between Pandey and Nagrale,” the official added.
As per procedure, the state government has to send a list of names of DG-rank officers to a UPSC panel, which goes on to select three names. Following this, the state government has to select one from the three.
However, in the past, the procedure has not been followed, as UPSC clearance for Jaiswal had come six months after he took charge last February as the state DGP.
Officials are also not ruling out the government giving temporary additional charge of DGP to an officer to get some time to decide on the next state police chief.
While the Maha Vikas Aghadi government and Jaiswal did not enjoy a favourable relationship, the government is being cautious about its choice for the next police chief, sources said.