At a time when the Delhi Police are faced with the onerous task of keeping terrorists at bay, apart from the usual duty of fighting organised crime and maintaining law and order, the prevailing policy of transfers and postings has contributed to a shortage of officers in supervisory posts.

In fact, earlier this year, shortly after Neeraj Kumar took over as Police Commissioner took over, he formally communicated his concerns regarding shortage of officers to the Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs seeking necessary initiatives. However, sources said there are still several crucial managerial posts lying vacant due to non-availability of officers. The recent decisions on postings have forced some officers to even approach the Central Administrative Tribunal.

The situation is such that in several cases the States where the officers were posted have expressed their inability to accommodate them due to restrictions on sanctioned posts or no ex-cadre post. In many cases, it has also created problems in smooth disbursal of salaries to the officers concerned.

While there are presently 54 sanctioned Delhi, Andaman &Nicobar Islands Police Service (DANIPS) posts in the Capital, the available strength is of about 47 officers of whom five were recently transferred out to places where they allegedly had to be accommodated beyond the sanctioned strength. According to police sources, two were sent to Andaman and Nicobar, two to Daman and Diu and one to Lakshadweep islands.

As against four sanctioned posts at the Superintendent of Police level, there are presently six officers in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, whereas seven DANIPS cadre officers and three Indian Police Service officers at the Deputy Superintendant of Police level were posted in place of the previous one such post in Lakshadweep, said a senior Delhi Police officer.

At the Joint Commissioner (equivalent to Inspector General) level also, officers are facing similar problems. While there are 20 such sanctioned posts in Delhi, there are only 13 to 14 officers occupying them and some of them are due for a transfer out of the city. It is learnt that there was one sanctioned IG post in Mizoram. However, two more posts at the IG level and one at the DIG level were created without consulting State authorities and officers were transferred to these.

In a letter to the Union Home Minister, Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla had in September taken up the issue stating: “I also understand that recently two IGP rank and a DIG rank IPS officers are being posted to Mizoram by inter-changing the sanctioned DIG and IG posts without our knowledge. This decision is arbitrary and hence, the posting orders may be cancelled.”

Incidentally, at the Director General level too, two IPS officers — from Andaman and Nicobar and Delhi — had to approach CAT to secure a stay on their transfer orders on the plea that the transfers were not made by the Joint Cadre Authority that comprises representatives from the respective States. While in one case the officer, due to retire in six months, was transferred out, in another he was posted out of Delhi a little above two years before retirement.

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