The Prime Minister's Office has finally cleared home minister P Chidambaram's special recruitment plan to induct IPS officers from young officers of paramilitary and state police forces to overcome a severe shortage of police officers.
The Union Public Service Commission is expected to hold the limited competitive examination for assistant commandant and deputy superintendent of police-rank officers from 2012.
The examination would be open to these officers, provided they have put in at least five years of service at this rank but aren't older than 35 years.
The home ministry was open to the idea of absorbing young army officers into the Indian Police Service (IPS) as well. But the proposal fell through, as the armed forces wanted their officers to be placed at a higher level than other inductees from the police on grounds of their experience in the army.
Government sources said the home ministry had started preliminary consultations with the UPSC on the limited examinations to be held annually for seven years. About 70 IPS officers would be inducted through this route each year, besides the 150 officers selected through the civil services examination.
The plan has its origins in Chidambaram flagging the shortage of IPS officers soon after taking over as home minister post 26/11 attacks in Mumbai. In January this year, the security establishment faces a shortfall of 1,327 officers. There are 3,393 IPS officers against a sanctioned strength of 4,720.
A panel headed by retired police officer Kamal Kumar, set up by Chidambaram, had recommended giving state police and paramilitary officers a second shot to get into the IPS.
The home ministry came up with the first proposal in February last year but was opposed by IPS officers. Many were worried that recruiting state and paramilitary officers into the IPS would take the sheen off their "elite service".
There were also raised eyebrows that the department of personnel and training had killed a similar proposal for the IAS.
Home ministry came up with first proposal in Feb last year but was opposed by IPS officers
Many were worried that recruiting state and paramilitary officers into the IPS would take the sheen off their ‘elite service’
Chidambaram, however, was clear that it was difficult for the security establishment to deliver on its mandate without the necessary number of police leaders.