Suspended sub-divisional magistrate Durga Nagapal’s immediate boss and Gautam Buddha Nagar district magistrate Kumar Ravikant Singh was finally shunted out by the state government on Tuesday night.
Unnao district magistrate Hira Lal Gupta will join in his place on Thursday.
The reason for the transfer is being linked to the incident on Tuesday in which an angry mob set ablaze a police vehicle to resist a demolition drive.
However, the sources are linking the suspension to local Samajwadi Party leader Narinder Bhati’s recent assurance to Kadalpur villagers, awaiting permission for building the mosque, that district magistrate Ravikant Singh would be transferred in a few days.
It is the same village where Nagpal had allegedly disallowed construction of a mosque on a gram sabha land without permission. The Uttar Pradesh government accused her of demolishing the mosque wall and jeopardising communal harmony in the area. However, district magistrate Ravikant Singh then gave a clean chit to Nagpal in his reply to the government and became the cause of wrath of the local SP leaders and the state government.
On Tuesday, villager Shafeeq Khan told HT, “We spoke to Narendra Bhati for expediting the permission to build a mosque. He told us ‘do not worry, first I will get DM transferred, and then new DM will give permission to build a mosque.”
Bhati is UP Agro chairman, who hold a cabinet minister’s rank in Uttar Pradesh government. Earlier, after Durga Shakti Nagapal’s suspension on July 27, he had claimed before the villagers that he got Durga suspended in “41 minutes.”
The Punjab cadre IAS officer was suspended after her crackdown on the sand mining mafia in Gautam Buddha Nagar along the Hindon and Yamuna rivers, which had alleged close links with Bhati.