It seeks to give more powers to government in police transfers
Amid a walkout by the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party and serious reservations by the Janata Dal (Secular) members, the Legislative Council on Tuesday adopted the Karnataka Police (Amendment) Bill that seeks to give more powers to the government in the transfer of police officers.
The Bill that has already been passed in the Assembly allows the government to have a have a hand in the composition of the Police Establishment Board that effects transfers of officers of the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police and below. Instead of the earlier system where the board was headed by a Director and Inspector-General of Police and was supposed to have three “senior-most” officers not below the rank of ADGPs as members, the above Bill provides for three senior officers not below the rank of ADGPs as members. This would give the choice of selection to the government instead of the earlier system where the senior-most officers automatically chose themselves.
Similarly, the Bill has removed the powers of the board to recommend the transfers of police officials of the rank of Additional SP and above.
The Bill has increased the government’s scope for modification of the board’s decision as it seeks to delete the rider from the law that stipulates effecting such modifications only during “exceptional cases”.
Taking serious exception to “tinkering” with the above law, JD(S) floor leader M.C. Nanaiah cautioned that such efforts to interfere in the police administration would affect the law and order situation as well as policing. “The increased political interference by the previous government has already affected the policing so much that the police are powerless in most of the areas. They have to take permission from their political bosses even to register an FIR in several areas,” he alleged.
Though the BJP members opposed the proposed amendments, Mr. Nanaiah and Home Minister K.J. George pointed out that these amendments had actually been proposed by the erstwhile BJP government.