Thursday, June 18, 2015

IPS Archana Ramasundaram’s tenure in CBI curtailed; 10 developments of a classic appointment row

Ms Ramasundaram (File Photo)
1980-batch IPS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre Archana Ramasundaram has had no work to do as additional director in Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for over a year because of judicial intervention from the apex court. Now, the Centre has prematurely curtailed her tenure in the CBI and appointed her as director in National Crime Records Bureau by temporarily upgrading the post. Yet, her new appointment would be subject to the outcome of the writ petition pending in the Supreme Court. Here are 10 developments of this unique appointment row:

1. Ms Ramasundaram is the first woman additional director in CBI. But because of a sequence of events that unfolded, she could not discharge her functions in the investigative agency.
2. She is a 1980 batch Tamil Nadu cadre IPS officer holding the rank of a director general of police (DGP).
3. The then CBI chief Ranjit Sinha wanted Ramasundaram as his deputy, but Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) recommended another IPS officer's name resulting into a massive controversy.
4. Finally, the Centre relented, and Ramasundaram joined the CBI on May 8, 2014, merely days before the new government took charge.
5. But on the day she joined the CBI, she was suspended by the Tamil Nadu government on the ground that she was not following rules before joining the CBI.
6. In fact, the problem occurred as she (then working as director general in Tamil Nadu Uniformed Service Recruitment Board) was not formally relieved by the state government. So, how could she join at a Central agency?
7. Her appointment was challenged in Allahabad High Court, but the court rejected the PIL.
8. Then, a writ petition was filed in the Supreme Court by journalist Vineet Narain arguing that her appointment was not in accordance with the procedure under Delhi Special Police Establishment Act.
9. The Supreme Court sent notices to the Centre and restrained her from discharging her functions in the CBI.
10. The case is currently on in the Supreme Court. And the outcome will impact her new appointment. 

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