Order issued late on Wednesday night after 48-hour police custody limit ended

The State government has suspended from service IAS officer Y. Srilakshmi for an indefinite period for being in police custody for more than 48 hours in connection with the iron ore mining leases issued in favour of the Obulapuram Mining Company owned by former Karnataka Minister Gali Janardhan Reddy, now in jail.

The government issued the suspension order late on Wednesday night when the 48-hour limit ended. The order has been placed in the registry of Government orders (GO), a website on the net marked as “confidential”, which cannot be opened.

When contacted, Chief Secretary Pankaj Dwivedi said the order had been issued under the Conduct and Service Rules for IAS officers. She would remain suspended “until further orders.”

In the vacancy that arose following her suspension, Mr K. Ratna Kishore, a senior officer now serving as Principal Secretary, Health & Medical, has been appointed Commissioner, Family Welfare, as additional charge.

Forty-five-year-old Srilakshmi, who entered service in 1988, is the first IAS officer in the State to face suspension on the grounds of being in police custody for more than 48 hours. An IAS officer was suspended in the 1980s for misconduct.

Officials concerned recalled that one IAS officer was suspended in Madhya Pradesh recently following police custody in connection with a Rs 400-crore scandal and another in Chhattisgarh over a muddle involving Rs 1,200 crore.

Sources said the government would review Srilakshmi's suspension after six months as laid down in the rules. The decision to revoke or continue the suspension would, however, depend on the progress of the CBI's investigation. A committee headed by the Chief Secretary would review the progress of the case periodically.