Ex-DGP withdraws petition from HC
Former director general of police (DGP) ID Bhandari on Friday withdrew his petition from the Himachal Pradesh high court, seeking quashing of a memorandum issued to him by the state government on charges of invading the privacy of (chief minister) Virbhadra Singh when he was the union minister for steel.
Bhandari's move comes a day after the vigilance bureau submitted a draft chargesheet against him in the infamous telephone tapping case.
The counsel for the ex-DGP prayed before a division bench, comprising justice Rajiv Sharma and justice Sureshwar Thakur, that the petitioner wants to withdraw his petition and the same was allowed by the bench.
In the petition, Bhandari had challenged the memorandum issued to him by the state government on April 17, 2014.
As per the memorandum, Bhandari, while posted as ADGP (CID) from January 2008 to August 2012, got implanted a bugging device (micro-recorder) in a room at Himachal Bhawan at Chandigarh, where the then union minister Virbhadra Singh was to stay in September 2010, "with an intention to breach privacy".
The second charge relates to directions given by the petitioner to a police officer, Mukesh Kumar, to depute two officials of CID to visit Chandigarh for placing the bugging devices in the room. It was alleged that after getting the footage recorded in a computer, the petitioner recorded the data in a pen drive and also directed the police officer to delete recording from the computer.
The state government had claimed that these two charges reflected that the petitioner had "failed to maintain discipline and devotion to duty and acted in a manner unbecoming of a responsible officer".
It was alleged that the petitioner had contravened the All India Service Rules.