Punjab DGP may go to Centre

Chandigarh, March 8

Putting an end to speculation, the Punjab Government has told the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and the Election Commission that Director General of Police (DGP) Suresh Arora is “willing” to join a posting with the Central Government on deputation. In a letter to the Joint Secretary (Police), a copy of which has been sent to the Chief Electoral Office, the state government has said the officer would be relieved only on conclusion of the election process. After the counting of votes on March 11, it will become clear as to which party will form the next government in Punjab. The new dispensation usually reshuffles officers, especially those at the top. There had been speculation that Arora may opt for a Central deputation after the Assembly elections and may be appointed Director General (DG) of one of the paramilitary forces. “Suresh Arora, DGP, Punjab has submitted his willingness for Central deputation. He has remained on deputation with the UT Administration of Chandigarh from January 1993 to August 1994 as SSP, which is regarded as inter-state deputation,” the letter to the MHA reads. The 1982-batch Punjab-cadre officer was picked by the Badal government to head the state police in October 2015, following anti-government protests over repeated incidents of sacrilege and the death of two youths in police firing in Faridkot. When terrorism was at its peak in Punjab in 1980s, Arora served as SSP in almost all key districts. He is to attain superannuation in September next year. “He is empanelled to hold DG/equivalent posts on Central deputation”, reads the communication sent by the state’s Home department.” The post of Director General, CRPF, is vacant as of now.  A senior government official said: “The poll code will remain in force till March 15. Till then, the state government can’t relieve any officer involved in the election process. This has been conveyed to the MHA.”