Setback for Kerala govt as SC reinstates TP Senkumar as Kerala DGP

Setback for Kerala govt as SC reinstates TP Senkumar as Kerala DGP
The Supreme Court on Monday directed the Kerala government to reinstate an expelled DGP, saying he
had been dismissed “summarily and without reasonable cause”.

It rejected the government’s plea that the opinion of the chief minister and his cabinet was grounds enough to remove senior IPS officer T P Senkumar.

Any removal must be based on credible facts, the court said.

A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta quashed the government’s order dated June 1, 2016, expelling Senkumar from the state police chief's post.

“We are also a little disturbed with the view expressed in the detailed counter affidavit and elsewhere that the appointment of the appellant was irregular, if not illegal. If that is so and the state government of Kerala is bent upon making irregular or illegal appointments to sensitive posts, then no one can help God’s own country,” the bench said.

It quashed the Central Administrative Tribunal and Kerala High Court’s orders, which had not found fault with the ouster. It said there was no legal justification to displace Senkumar as the Kerala Police Act of 2011 mandated a minimum two-year tenure for DGPs.

Senkumar was removed in May 2016 after the LDF government assumed office and exactly one year after his appointment. The government relied on two notes by the additional home secretary.

One held Senkumar responsible for the Puttingal temple tragedy in Kollam, in which about 100 people lost their lives following an explosion during a fireworks display.

In the second note, Senkumar was blamed for laxity in probing the murder of Dalit girl Jisha.

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