There are contradictions within the report. This is what State Home Minister Jayant Patil (47) said about the Ram Pradhan Committee report. Patil minced no words while admitting the government did have differences with the 26/11 probe report submitted by the former Union home secretary. Excerpts from an interview with
RD Pradhan, who led the probe into the 26/11 siege, has said the report drafted by the panel can be shared with the public. The government insists it is ‘sensitive’, giving rise to speculation the state has something to hide.
We are not shielding anyone. No ministers have been named in the report. There are no political reasons for not tabling it. The sole reason is that we don’t want the report to have any kind of an negative impact on the Kasab trial. In that sense, it is sensitive, especially while pertaining to intelligence flow.
Are you happy with the way it has shaped up? Is it comprehensive?
I don’t want to comment on this.
The report’s findings and Action-Taken-Report give a sense of a divided house vis-à-vis the government and police. Comment.
The report has tried to bring out some facts; we have tried to clarify on some of those aspects to put forth the state’s view. The report does have contradictions.
For instance, there is much on (Commissioner of Police) Hasan Gafoor not following standard operating procedure. Yet, the report gives credit to (Joint Commissioner of Police) Rakesh Maria (official selected by Gafoor) for doing a good job while manning the control room. So, didn’t he (Gafoor) as police chief select the right people and place them in the right situation?
One of the key points of the report has been to showcase how ill-equipped the police were in terms of weapons. Do you accept that?
We agree there is a severe need for police modernisation and have started working on that. But, if the report says the police require Rs 65 crore every year for firing practice, then why doesn’t it address how the state got proposals for less than half that amount? If you send proposals for Rs 5 crore, you will be budgeted only Rs 3 crore.
There’s a major difference of opinion between the committee and government on the role of the DGP and Commissioner of Police. Pradhan said the DGP cannot interfere with the workings of the city police commissionerate.
We’ve pointed it out in our Action-Taken-Report. The DGP is the senior-most police official in the state. The Bombay Police Act states Maharashtra has one police force. In an extraordinary situation like 26/11, there is nothing stopping the DGP from taking over, which he did in some aspects.