Tribunal reverses BMTF chief's transfer

R P Sharma, the police heading the Bangalore Metropolitan Task Force (BMTF) isn’t going anywhere, yet. 

On Thursday, the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) reinstated him as the chief of BMTF by staying his transfer, which was made on Monday by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

Ajay Kumar, the judicial member of CAT who heard the matter, not only granted an interim stay on his transfer, but also stalled the appointment of  P Ravindranath, Inspector-General of Police, Excise Enforcement, to Sharma’s post.

Sharma moved the Tribunal challenging the transfer order, indicating to the BBMP that he was not willing to meekly succumb to the civic agency’s tactics. In his arguments to CAT, Sharma said the transfer order was illegal, arbitrary and against public interest.

Navkesh Batra, Sharma’s lawyer, submitted that the BMTF had police powers bestowed upon it by a special notification of the government in order to tackle menaces like land grabbing.  

Sharma said the BMTF could also draw upon assistance from the State Reserve Police Force. 

He further submitted that while discharging his duty, Sharma had investigated several cases against the BBMP and its officials. 

“These were unpleasant actions, in response to which the BBMP officials went on a strike demanding his ouster and withdrawal of police powers.

 They also demanded that the BMTF should report only to the BBMP Commissioner. In short, they wanted to continue their acts with impunity and without being accountable,” said Batra. 

Batra argued that the strike was supported by other vested interests including political ones.

‘Violation of SC order’

He also said that the transfer is in violation of a Supreme Court order in Prakash Singh case, which mandates assured two year service. 

Sharma was transferred to BMTF on September 9, 2011, as the Inspector General of Police. 

Later, in January 2012, he got promotion as the Additional Director General of Police.

Sharma was unceremoniously removed  from the BMTF following a strong and vehement protest by the BBMP engineers and officers.

Garbage contractors added strength to the agitation by not lifting waste around Bangalore from August 8 to 10. 

BBMP engineers protested registration of 16 cases against them for ignoring complaints of building plan violations.

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