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October 2017
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SC Contempt Notice to Kerala for Not Reinstating Senkumar as Police Chief
 
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday slammed Kerala government for not reinstating IPS officer T P Senkumar as the State Police Chief despite its April 24 order.

Kerala government will now have to file a reply on Monday, explaining why it should not be held guilty of contempt of court.

Kerala Law Minister A K Balan, however, refused to see it as a setback for the state government. “The government was using the remedial measures available legally. We asked for clarification because there were grounds to ask for it,” Balan said.

On April 24, the apex court had ordered Kerala government to reinstate Senkumar who was removed from the post of DGP in June last year.

On Wednesday, Kerala government had moved the Supreme Court, claiming that Senkumar cannot be reinstated as the State Police Chief. Seeking further clarification on the court’s judgment, the CPMled Left Democratic Front (LDF) government had contended that Senkumar was appointed as the Director General of Police (DGP) before his removal in June 2016 and therefore he cannot be reinstated as “Director General of Police & State Police Chief”.

In its application, the state government had argued that Senkumar was neither empanelled nor selected as the State Police Chief and he was holding the post as “DGP and Head of Police Force” when he was removed. The state government had said there was another person appointed as the State Police Chief.

Examining the Kerala Police Act 2011, which assures a minimum tenure of two years for DGPs, the court had held there was no justification in law to displace Senkumar before the end of his term. Senkumar was appointed in May 2015.

It further stated that the court was “disturbed” by the fact that aspersions were cast on Senkumar only after the LDF government came to power in May 2016. “The removal or displacement or transfer out of an officer from a sensitive tenure post requires serious consideration and good reasons that can be tested so that the officer is not dealt with as a pawn in a game. Unfortunately, the somewhat exacting standards are absent in the present case and the appellant (Senkumar) was displaced from the post of state police chief summarily and without reasonable cause,” it held.


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