Challenge to appointment as Delhi CP abuse of process of law, result of vendetta: Rakesh Asthana to HC

The Centre has submitted that Mr. Asthana's appointment was done in public interest, keeping in mind the diverse law and order challenges faced by the national capital. File.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Gujarat cadre IPS officer Rakesh Asthana has informed the Delhi High Court that he was facing a barrage of social media campaigns and selective litigations over his appointment as Delhi Police Commissioner at the behest of some “undisclosed individual/ rival/ interest”.

Mr. Asthana took charge as the post on July 28. His appointment, which came just days before his superannuation on July 31, has been contested before the court by Sadre Alam and NGO Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL).

“These petitions are not bonafide public interest litigations (PIL), but are a flagrant abuse of august forum of this Court for some hidden personal vendetta of either of them or of someone on whose behest several attempts are being made against me to derail my career,” Mr. Asthana said in an affidavit before the court.

The individuals running the NGO had in recent past for “some oblique and ostensible undisclosed reason” have started a barrage of selective actions against him either “out of some vendetta about which I am not aware or at the behest of some individual/ interest”, he stated.

Another NGO’s ‘campaign’

The 60-year-old former Director General of Border Security Force (BSF) observed that apart from CPIL, another NGO, Common Cause, have been selectively campaigning against him.

“Outside court the people having control of these organisations spearheaded a malicious campaign against me”, he claimed. This had been regularly happening since he was appointed as Special Director of the CBI, he added .

This week, the Central government came out in support of Mr. Asthana, saying his appointment as Delhi Police Commissioner was done in “public interest”, taking into account the Capital’s policing issues, which not only had national security, but also cross-border implications.

CPIL and Mr. Alam, in their separate pleas, have contended that his appointment was “in clear and blatant breach” of the directions of the Supreme Court as Mr. Asthana “did not have a minimum residual tenure of six months”, and that no Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) panel was formed for the appointment of Delhi Police Commissioner.

The pleas argued that the decision of the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) in appointing Mr. Asthana for the post was “completely illegal on multiple grounds”.

The court will hear the case on September 20.

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Printable version | Oct 28, 2021 9:10:14 PM |

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