The Centre has appointed an officer to look into the disciplinary proceedings against former West Bengal Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay, Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Suvendu Adhikari said on Wednesday, PTI reported.

The action against Bandyopadhyay was taken in June on charges of “misconduct and misbehaviour”.

The proceedings against Bandyopadhyay were initiated after the West Bengal government refused to release him even as the central government’s Department of Personnel and Training asked him to report to its Delhi office.

The Centre’s order asking Bandyopadhyay to report to Delhi did not mention the reason for the move. But, it came hours after Bandyopadhyay and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee skipped a review meeting on Cyclone Yaas with the prime minister on May 28.

On Wednesday, Adhikari, the Leader of Opposition in the West Bengal Assembly, tweeted about the appointment of an official to look into the charges against Bandyopadhyay.

“All officials [with] Mamata Banerjee must always remember: ‘Be you ever so high, the law is always above you’,” Adhikari, a Bharatiya Janata Party leader, said in a tweet on Wednesday.

The controversy

The Department of Personnel and Training, which comes under the central government, had directed Bandyopadhyay to report to its office in Delhi hours after Banerjee allegedly violated norms by not attending the meeting with Modi.

However, West Bengal refused to comply with the summons, terming them in “violation of applicable laws” against “public interest” and “ab initio void”.

Instead, Bandyopadhyay retired from the Indian Administrative Service and joined the West Bengal government on May 30 as a chief advisor to the chief minister, a political appointment that underscored his importance to Banerjee.

With its order to summon Bandyopadhyay to Delhi rendered infructuous, the Centre also sent Bandyopadhyay a show-cause notice under the Disaster Management Act for allegedly refusing to attend the meeting with Modi.

The section under which he has been sent the notice is related to the punishment for refusing to comply with the central or state government’s order with imprisonment up to one year or fine, or both. If the refusal leads to loss of life or imminent danger, the punishment may extend up to two years, according to the section.

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