Determined to make an example of Durga Sakthi Nagpal, the Akhilesh Yadav government has initiated major penalty proceedings against the young IAS officer that comes with a punishment as severe as dismissal or compulsory retirement.
In its formal communication to the Centre that reached Delhi Monday morning, the Uttar Pradesh government informed the department of personnel about its suspension order and the decision to launch major penalty proceedings.
Penalties under the civil services disciplinary rules are classified as minor and major penalties.
Read more: Durga not alone: 2,000 UP senior officials transferred in 18 months
Officials held guilty in minor penalty proceedings are let off with a censure, withholding promotion or increments and pay-cuts for a maximum of three years if held guilty of violating the rulebook.
The UP government’s move to invoke major penalty proceedings against the 28-year-old IAS officer means she faces the risk of a demotion in pay scale and post, compulsory retirement and dismissal.
Read more : Durga suspended, SP challenges Centre to withdraw IAS officers in UP
BJP Mahila Morcha protesting against the suspension of IAS officer Durga in Lucknow on Monday. PTI Photo.
But the Akhilesh Yadav government’s move to initiate the proceedings against Nagpal appeared to be an issue of posturing, particularly since there were enough safeguards in the rulebook to protect Nagpal.
The central government as well as the Union Public Service Commission can disagree with the findings of the inquiry conducted by the state government. In case of dismissal, the state government can only recommend the penalty which will have to be vetted by the UPSC as well as the Centre.
BJP Mahila Morcha carry an effigy of Akhilesh Yadav during a protest against the suspension of IAS officer Durga in Lucknow on Monday. PTI Photo.
“It is very rare for an All India Services officer to be sacked... Only a handful of them have been dismissed over the past decade,” an official said, pointing that it was not common for the three – state, centre and UPSC – to be on the same page on dismissal.
In its communication to the Centre, the UP government has attributed the suspension to demolition of an under-construction wall of a mosque in Greater Noida on the eve of Ramzan that could have endangered communal harmony in the area.
Read more: Row over Durga Shakti intensifies between UP govt, Centre