Union ministers flay DGP’s comment

Bhubaneswar: A day after Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan criticised Odisha DGP Sanjeev Marik for the latter’s remark on Central funds for police modernisation in the State, Union ministers Jual Oram and Mahesh Sharma today backed Pradhan on the issue.

“If the State has any grievance relating to Central funds, the Chief Minister should talk to the Union Home minister on this. Why would an IPS officer talk on this,” Jual Oram asked.

On the development, Mahesh Sharma said that the issues must be raised only by the politicians.

Yesterday Pradhan had cautioned civil service officers over making such statements.

“I heard the recent criticism of Odisha DGP. This is not correct on part of an all India Service Officer to give such a statement,” Pradhan had said on the sidelines of a party function here.

Alleging that the ruling party in Odisha has been engaging IAS and IPS officers in political activities in the state, Pradhan said the officers should keep it in mind that they are employees of the Government of India.

Pradhan’s statement came in response to Odisha DGP Marik’s remarks on April 29, that the Centre’s decision to stop funding of police modernisation in the state will affect infrastructure development activities.

“Stopping of funds for police modernisation will certainly hit the police force. The Centre should review its decision. The state earlier used to get Rs 127 crore per annum from different heads for development of the police,” Marik had told reporters after attending a meeting presided by Chief Secretary G C Pati on April 29.

Marik also said that the state-level empowered committee headed by the Chief Secretary has assured the Odisha Police of providing all necessary assistance for the development of the force in the state.

He had also said that the state government would give priority to modernisation of the police force even as the Centre stopped funding under different heads.