The Ministry of Home Affairs on Tuesday asked the West Bengal government to initiate disciplinary proceedings against Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar for violation of service rules, reported The Indian Express. The Central Bureau of Investigation had attempted to question Kumar in connection with two chit fund scams.
The ministry, in a communication to West Bengal chief secretary on February 5, said as per information it had received, Kumar joined Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s “dharna” along with a few other police officers at the Metro Channel in Kolkata. This is prima facie in contravention of the extant provisions of the All India Services (Conduct) Rules, 1968, and All India Services (Discipline & Appeal) Rules, 1969, the ministry said.
“In view of the above, the West Bengal government has been requested by MHA to initiate action against the officer and intimate the action taken in this regard,” it said. The home ministry, which is the cadre controlling authority of Indian Police Service officers, cited Kumar’s “indisciplined behaviour” and violation of service rules for initiating the proceedings.
The ministry cited the provisions of Rules 3(1), 5(1) and 7 of the All India Services (Conduct) Rules, 1968, which Kumar reportedly flouted. According to the rules, a member of the service should maintain absolute integrity, should not be associated with a political party, nor take part or assist in any manner a political movement or party.
Members of the service are also prohibited from making statements in media or publish documents that criticise a current policy or action of the central government or a state government, which is capable of embarrassing the relations between the central government and any state government.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee ended her three-day dharna in Kolkata on Tuesday night. The stand-off between the state and the CBI began after a CBI team reached Kumar’s home to question him on Sunday evening. Police officials stopped them and detained five members of the team for around two hours. Banerjee came out in Kumar’s support and called the CBI action a “coup” by the Centre.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed Rajeev Kumar to cooperate with the CBI in its inquiry in the Rose Valley and Saradha chit fund scams. The court said no coercive steps, including arrest, can be taken against the police officer but issued contempt notice to Kumar, Director General of Police Virendra and the West Bengal government, and asked them to file replies by February 18.