Ahead of the simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in Odisha, RTI activists have alleged rampant interference of Biju Janata Dal Ministers and MLAs in transfer of State police officers who are allegedly close to them.
“As many as 81 letters of recommendations were received by the State Director General of Police for transfer and postings of inspectors in-charge, deputy superintendents of police and additional SPs between May 21, 2015 and December 15, 2016,” alleged Odisha Soochna Adhikar Abhijan, an association of RTI activists.
“Of the 81 letters, only five were issued by non-BJD leaders. The highest number of recommendations — seven — for transfer of police officers was received from Sananda Marandi, the Deputy Speaker of Odisha Assembly,” said Biswajit Mohanty, who had sought the information through a Right to Information plea.
The letters of recommendation are also frequent for posting of Odisha State Armed Police personnel. According to Mr. Mohanty, in two years — May 8, 2015, to June 20, 2017, — as many as 57 such letters were received from BJD MLAs and MPs recommending transfer of OSAP personnel. Nayagarh MLA Arun Sahoo sent the highest number of recommendations — 11 — while 32 BJD Ministers also recommended transfer of OSAP personnel, he claimed.
The OSAA members alleged that the BJD leaders have been “misusing” their power to ensure posting of their “favourite” police officers in their area.
“Tirtol MLA Rajashree Mallick recommended the posting of a police officer as SDPO, Paradip, on the grounds that he had received several awards and medals, though she admitted that there was a vigilance case pending against him,” claimed Pradip Pradhan, OSAA convenor.