Vikarabad SP shunted out
Taking a serious view of the arrest of TPCC working president and Congress candidate in Kodangal A Revanth Reddy, the Election Commission on Wednesday transferred Vikarabad Superintendent of Police T Annapurna and posted Avinash Mohanty in her place
Hyderabad: Taking a serious view of the arrest of TPCC working president and Congress candidate in Kodangal A Revanth Reddy, the Election Commission on Wednesday transferred Vikarabad Superintendent of Police T Annapurna and posted Avinash Mohanty in her place.
Annapurna was directed to hand over the charge to Mohanty with immediate effect and report to the headquarters. The commission also instructed the government not to utilise the services of Annapurna for election purposes. Amidst high drama, the police arrested Revanth in the wee hours of Tuesday and released him after receiving directions from the High Court, which took serious note of the incident. The Division Bench of the Hyderabad High Court, comprising Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan and Justice M Satyanarayana Murthy, on Wednesday for the second day in sequence heard the petition challenging illegal detention of Revanth Reddy.
The Advocate General representing the state of Telangana produced before the court the documents which contained the decision of the government to detain Revanth Reddy. After perusing the documents at length, Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan expressed extreme displeasure as the documents did not bear any seal and were undated. The court asked the Advocate General whether this was the way official communication between various departments happen in the state of Telangana. The bench also asked the Advocate General why it should not treat the documents submitted before the court as fabricated. Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan further held that these documents did not inspire any confidence and therefore the court needs more documents to ascertain whether the detention of Revanth Reddy is legal or not.
Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan asked the AG on whose directions the Superintendent of Police, Vikarabad issued the detention orders. To this, the AG responded saying that she exercised powers conferred on her by law and did not seek orders from anyone. Justice retorted saying that how could the SP exercise her powers independently when the Model Code of Conduct was invoked and therefore, she is obliged to receive orders from the Chief Electoral Officer to issue any detention orders. The bench also directed the AG to ensure the appearance of Director General of Police, Telangana to determine the role of police in the entire episode. The court reassembled at 2:15 pm to hear the arguments of both the sides. Telangana DGP M Mahender Reddy appeared in person before the court in the afternoon.
The bench took the DGP to task with continuous questions and asked him why no seal and date was present in the intra and inter communication between various authorities. To this, the DGP responded that there is no such mechanism for internal communications. The bench questioned the DGP how he could act on any document which doesn't bear the seal and anyone could send such documents and hence a practice which makes it difficult to verify the veracity of the documents is grossly improper. The DGP responded that based on a letter sent by the CEO - Telangana, he had directed the Superintendent of Police of competent jurisdiction to take requisite measures to ensure the public meeting happens peacefully. To this, the bench responded that the letter sent by the CEO-Telangana also doesn't bear a signature of the CEO or the seal of his office.
Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan also asked the DGP whether any communication has been sent to Revanth Reddy before his detention that his call to stall public meeting of the caretaker Chief Minister was in violation of various laws in operation? To this, the DGP responded that the Returning Officer has issued a letter to that effect. The judge retorted that the communication from the RO contains relevant provisions under the Indian Penal Code and the Representation of the People’s Act but Revanth Reddy was detained under Section 151 of the Criminal Procedure Code.