The Supreme Court on Friday said that the Election Commission’s order to appoint RS Gill as Director General of Police in Punjab in place of SS Virk would remain in force till two weeks after the completion of the process for assembly elections in the state.
The clarification came from a Bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan after senior counsel Rajiv Dhavan mentioned an urgent application on behalf of the Punjab Government that it was unable to implement the court’s order to select a DGP in terms of police reforms verdict due to EC’s directive.
Passing the order on police reforms, the court had on September 22 directed that the DGP shall be selected by the State Government from amongst the three senior most officers empanelled for promotion to that rank by the UPSC. The empanelment had to be done on the basis of their length of service, very good record and range of experience for heading the police force.
However, the court had on January 11 given four weeks to all the states to implement the direction making it mandatory have a fixed tenure of two years for the DGP. The Punjab Government moved the application as the four weeks time expired on Thursday.
Dhavan pointed out that the Election Commission’s order to replace Virk, has put the state in a dilemma and requested the court to extend the deadline for a further period of four weeks.
The court clarified that the EC’s order would remain in operation till two weeks after the completion of the electoral process and the state could complete the exercise of selection of a new DGP after that.