While declining to pass any interim order, the Bengaluru Bench of the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) on Monday ordered issue of notice to the State government on a petition filed by IPS officer Alok Kumar questioning the August 2, 2019, Government Order transferring him from the post of the Commissioner of Police, Bengaluru.
A bench comprising K.B. Suresh, Member (judicial) and C.V. Sankar, Member (administrative) also ordered issue of notice to incumbent commissioner Bhaskar Rao.
In his petition, Mr. Kumar has contended that his transfer from the post was ‘premature’ as he was allowed serve only for 47 days contrary to the mandatory period of one year as per the Section 20-F of the Karnataka Police Act, 1963, which has provided minimum tenure for various posts in the Police Department based on directions issued by the Supreme Court to check political influence in transfer of police officers.
Pointing out that he had taken charge as commissioner only on June 17, 2019, and was transferred on August 2, it has been contended in Mr. Kumar’s petition that his transfer was illegal for another reason as the State Civil Services Board had not made a recommendation for his transfer.
Though the Section 20-F of the Act allows transfer of police officers prior to completion of minimum tenure at a post, it has been contended in Mr. Kumar’s petition that none of the exemptions provided for premature transfer existed in his case. While pointing out that the only event that had taken place after he took over as Police Commissioner in June was that there was change of ruling government on July 26, it has been contended on the petition that change does not fall under the statutory scheme of exemptions for transferring police officers from the cadre posts prior to completion of minimum tenure.