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Two senior officers of Delhi Police have been quietly shunted out of their prized posting at Rashtrapati Bhavan after several complaints were lodged over alleged security mismanagement during the May 26 swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his ministers.
For instance, Delhi Police had decided against providing water pouches to guests, arguing that they can be thrown as a tool of protest, instead placing water dispensers about 100 metres away from the VVIP area. As a result, a former President could not drink water despite feeling thirsty, while a top industrialist’s son suffered a heatstroke and had to be rushed to Ram Manohar Lohia hospital.
Sources in Delhi Police told HT that joint commissioner Sunil Garg and deputy commissioner Amit Roy faced the heat. They are IPS officers from the 1992 and 1995 batch respectively.
The complaints, according to sources, were received from some VIPs among others. The issues also varied from lack of drinking water facilities to a parking mess causing long delay in public officials getting back their cars.
Delhi Police, apparently, didn’t allow more mist fans in the forecourt despite it being a scorching day, raising safety and security concerns. The security agencies wanted a foolproof arrangement for the heads of state, among other important attendees.
“There was no ambulance or even drinking water for visitors there, Dr Harshvardhan (Union health minister) took the lead in efforts to resuscitate the boy and held his hand till a special ambulance arrived,” a senior cop told HT.
While multiple security outfits were involved in the planning of the event that turned out to be the biggest in the history of Rashtrapati Bhavan, Delhi Police had the final say in these arrangements.
The parking mess saw several VIPs including parliamentarians waiting haplessly for their cars. The newly-sworn in ministers too, were seen stranded near the parking area.
Both Roy and Garg had served at Rashtrapati Bhavan for less than the stipulated time period of two years. They were transferred as per orders issued by lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung on June 3.
Garg got his new posting in the operations unit as its joint commissioner instead of an active field duty. Roy has been sent to the security unit of Delhi Police.
Roy has been replaced by HM Meena, a 2001-batch officer. He recently returned to the Capital after serving as SSP in Mizoram.
Senior police officers, however, downplayed the incident and said, “This was a routine transfer. There is no vendetta involved anywhere.”