What led to the ouster of Sanjeev Marik as Odisha DGP?

Bhubaneswar: While the power corridor is abuzz with the sudden appointment of Kanwar Brajesh Singh as the new Director General of Police (DGP) replacing his predecessor Sanjeev Marik, the decision of the Odisha government has evoked mixed reactions.

In his reaction, former DGP SN Tiwari said there is no issue if he (Marik) has gone on leave suo motu. But if he has been forced to go on leave, then it’s a different thing altogether.

“Prior to this, he has been snubbed and humiliated a number of times in the past. I have seen there was least interference of the state government in the affairs of the police in the past. However, now-a-days, the police is considered as one of its most important tools”, he observed.

“There must be something behind the sudden decision of the government in relieving Marik from his post when he was scheduled to superannuate in about one-and-half month. The police department will want to know about the course of event that led to the ouster of the DGP. I think the decision taken by the state government will have an effect on the police department”, said former DGP Bipin Bihari Mishra.

Criticising the appointment of the new DGP KB Singh, senior scribe Rabi Das said the police officer, who had received stricture from the Odisha High Court in connection with the former DGP Prakash Mishra, was instantly rewarded by the state government. The reason: his intense loyalty.

“As the government was so concerned about him, it immediately announced his name as the next DGP and what is most surprising, the new DGP lost no time in taking his new assignment when his predecessor was still in charge of the post!”

It is worthwhile here to mention that chief minister Naveen Patnaik was upset with the activities of Marik since last six months.

Though he had successfully conducted the Nabakalebara festival, his intense respect for the Daitapatis by touching their feet while in uniform had triggered widespread reactions in the state. As the news was flashed in the media, the chief minister had called him up and gave a piece of his mind to him with a warning not to repeat such incident in future.

However, Marik became the eyesore to the state government for providing assistance to former Kendrapara SP Satish Gajbhiye who was placed under suspension for his excess brutality on the people during a protest demonstration in connection with the much-talked-about Sarathi Baba case in the first week of August this year.

While the state government had asked Marik to frame draft charge against Gajbhiye with immediate effect, the latter, instead of carrying out the orders, had preferred to delay the action which subsequently went in the favour of the suspended SP. The matter went to such extent that the suspended SP, taking advantage of the loopholes of the government, met Marik and submitted his joining report much to the embarrassment of the chief minister.

Besides, the transfer order of more than 50 senior police officers on October 17 this year is said to be another major factor for his ouster.

Though the chief minister, after a preliminary review had directed Marik not to relieve any official, the latter had ignored his order and issued a fresh order on October 30 to relieve these officers.

Taking strong exception to the highhandedness of Marik, the office of the chief minister, in a telephonic message, later directed all DIGs and IGs not to implement the order of the DGP.

As the ongoing face-off between the chief minister and Marik came to the fore, the former finally flexed his muscle by relieving Marik from his post while he had only eight weeks left for his retirement (December 31).

The state government had appointed Marik as the DGP on July 6, 2014.