MHA reminds defaulting states of SC guidelines on DGP appointment

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has sent a letter to the Chief Secretaries of seven states—Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Odisha, and West Bengal—where temporary Directors General of Police (DGPs) are currently officiating despite the availability of eligible officers.

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Ministry of Home Affairs
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The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has sent a letter to the Chief Secretaries of seven states—Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Odisha, and West Bengal—where temporary Directors General of Police (DGPs) are currently officiating despite the availability of eligible officers. The Union Home Secretary, emphasizing the Supreme Court’s (SC) directive on DGP appointments, has reminded these states that the appointment of temporary or acting DGPs should only occur in exceptional circumstances.

The letter underscores the SC’s guidelines, particularly those outlined in the Prakash Singh case, emphasizing that states should adhere to the apex court’s instructions to appoint regular DGPs with a fixed tenure of two years. The communication from the Ministry of Home Affairs reiterates that temporary or “acting DGPs” should be avoided, and their appointment should be reserved for exceptional situations in line with the SC’s directives.

The SC’s directives on DGP appointments are applicable to states, excluding Union Territories. Therefore, the Jammu and Kashmir administration is not included in this particular context.

While Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, and Punjab have had temporary DGPs for almost or over a year, four other states—Uttarakhand, Odisha, West Bengal, and Uttar Pradesh—and the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir have recently appointed “acting DGPs.” Notably, Uttar Pradesh has seen the appointment of four acting DGPs in the past 20 months.

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