Outstanding service record put Sumedh Singh Saini in the seat of director general of police (DGP), the Punjab government has submitted in the high court.
On Tuesday, the Punjab and Haryana high court received details of Saini's promotion from the state government. The affidavit that DS Bains, principal secretary of the home department, filed includes that for the DGP's appointment, the government had considered all eight eligible Indian Police Service (IPS) officers, and even the 1994 Ludhiana abduction and killing charge against Saini in the Delhi court.
Saini was appointed DGP on March 14. Four DGP-rank officers and another four of the 1982 batch were in the race for promotion, the government has submitted. On March 3, it said, officers Anil Kaushik, Shashi Kant, Rajan Gupta and GD Pandey had served on the DGP's rank already. The remaining eligible candidates were Sanjeev Gupta, Sumedh Singh Saini, Suresh Arora, and Rajinder Singh.
The affidavit suggests that DS Bains had made a file noting on March 13 that Saini had two cases against him, of which the Supreme Court had quashed one of late with heavy strictures and the other was sub judice in Delhi. "Charges were framed against Shri Saini in this case in 2006," reads the noting. "He was promoted as ADGP in 2009… The same situation continues, and thus, there is no bar on promoting Shri Saini as DGP."
The high court took the affidavit on record, and on petitioner's request for time to submit the reply to Bains' affidavit, adjourned the case for September 11.
The petitioner, non-governmental organisation (NGO) Voices for Freedom, had challenged Saini's appointment as DGP on the ground that he was charged with kidnapping and killing innocent people in Ludhiana, and the case was pending in Delhi, in which a special CBI court in 2006 had even chargesheeted him and others.