Home India News Notices to 8 IPS officers over missing bullet-proof jacket files

Notices to 8 IPS officers over missing bullet-proof jacket files


Mumbai : The Maharashtra government Friday served show cause notices to eight officers of the Indian Police Service (IPS) over missing files pertaining to the purchase of 110 bullet-proof jackets by the Mumbai police in 2002.

State Home Minister R.R. Patil told reporters that the officers have been asked to give their replies within a month to Director General of Police A.N. Roy.

Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Chandra Iyengar told IANS that the details of the issue were not available with her.

The files containing the data about the purchases of bullet-proof jackets by the Mumbai Police around seven years ago went missing recently.

A probe by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in 2004-2005 found that these bullet-proof jackets – purchased from NTB HiTech Ceramics, Pune at a total cost of Rs.2.7 million – were of sub-standard quality.

The officers to whom the show-cause notices were issued include Principal Secretary (Home) P.K. Jain, Additional Director-General of Police (Planning/Coordination) Subhash Awate, Additional Commissioner of Police (Special Branch) Ashutosh Dhombre, and Joint Commissioner of Police (Administration) B. More.

The notices have also gone to Deputy Inspector-General of Police Rajneesh Sheth, and three deputy commissioners of police (Mumbai) – Vijay Jadhav, Sanjay Apranti and S.R. Paraskar.

It is widely suspected that top police officials who combated the 10 Pakistani terrorists during the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai in 2008 were given these sub-standard bullet-proof jackets.

A prominent officer among those killed in the attacks was the former Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) chief Hemant Karkare.

In November 2009, Mumbai social worker Santosh Daundkar had filed a public interest litigation alleging widespread irregularities in the purchase of the bullet-proof jackets.

Following this, Mumbai Police registered a case in the matter pertaining to the missing bullet-proof jacket worn by Karkare.

Subsequently, a sweeper of the Sir J.J. Hospital here claimed that he had dumped the missing jacket into a garbage bin, but later backtracked on his claims.

Daundkar’s lawyer Y.P. Singh found it strange that the officers who have been issued show-causes Friday have to file their replies to the present acting Director-General of Police A.N. Roy, who will compile a report and send it to the state government.

“Ironically, these bullet-proof jackets, purchased when M.N. Singh was the city police chief, were found to be sub-standard during the tenure of Roy,” Y.P. Trivedi, a former IPS officer turned lawyer, told IANS.