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Centre seeks UP response,rule changes

Durga Case: 'Will ensure that honest officers not victimised'

With IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagpal’s suspension by the Uttar Pradesh government becoming a rallying point,the Centre has said it is planning changes in the All India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules,1969,to ensure that honest and upright officers are “not victimised” at the whims of political bosses.

The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) sought an immediate report from the Uttar Pradesh government Sunday on Nagpal’s suspension. Late evening,Uttar Pradesh sent the Centre a copy of its chargesheet against Nagpal.

Among the rules the Centre is seeking to change is the period within which a competent authority must file a chargesheet against a suspended officer. Under the service rules,this is within 45 days of the date of suspension,failing which it has to take permission of the Centre,which generally gives another 45 days to issue the chargesheet.

“Yes,we are going to change the rules to ensure that honest and upright officers are not harassed and victimised,” Minister of State for Personnel V Narayanasamy told The Indian Express. The changes would also benefit the IPS,IFS.

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The Centre’s move comes just a day after UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying that Nagpal should be treated fairly.

The All India IAS Association is also said to have demanded that the existing requirement of seeking an explanation from the officer before suspending him or her — a practice not followed in Nagpal’s case — should be made mandatory. DoPT sources said that this demand is under “active consideration”.

“The state government,which suspended Durga Shakti Nagpal on July 27,was expected to send a report to the Centre in one week. We wrote to them on July 30 urging them to send the report within that period. One week lapsed on August 2 and therefore,we decided to write to them again,” Narayansamy said.

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The state government has to send a report to the Centre “ordinarily” within 15 days from the date of suspension.

First published on: 05-08-2013 at 03:30:13 am
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