SC dismisses contempt plea on IAS officer Nagpal’s suspension

New Delhi: The Supreme Court today dismissed a plea for initiating contempt proceedings against the UP government and its Chief Minister for suspending IAS officer Durga Sakthi Nagpal, who had cracked down on the sand mafia in Gautam Budh Nagar.
The petition filed by an advocate had contended that the officer had only complied with the orders of this court in demolishing the illegal structure and the decision of state government to suspend her amounts to contempt.
However, a bench comprising justices H L Dattu and S J Mukhopadhaya said nothing is there to show that there is wilful and deliberate contempt by any of the alleged contemnors (state authorities).
"How does the action of state government amounts to contempt," the bench asked and noted that the authorities by themselves have not taken any decision relating to the apex court's orders on preventing unauthorised construction of religious buildings on public land.
The bench also said that the contempt petition has been filed too early when the state government has not taken final decision on the charge sheet issued to her.
The bench said the stage of contempt would only arise after the officer files response to the charge sheet and the state government takes a final decision.
The petition, filed by advocate M L Sharma, had also named Chief Secretary Javed Usmani, working Chief Secretary Aalok Ranjan and the Centre as respondents.
The petition had contended that action against 28-year-old Nagpal was in contempt of the apex court order on preventing unauthorised construction of religious structures on public land.
"Following the Supreme Court direction is not an offence that has been performed by the officer concerned," he had said.